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#1145 How Cultures Create Emotions - Batja Mesquita

This was a totally new topic and conversation for me and I found it fascinating. It was also somewhat confronting because Batja’s research around emotions didn’t neatly fit into my ‘how emotions work’ box. How dare she. In this chat, we talk about the relationship between culture and its impact on emotions; and not just cultural differences between countries but also differences between religions, corporations and all kinds of groups. Growing up in the Netherlands where (in Batja’s words) people are somewhat direct, not gushy and not overly complimentary (unless it’s totally warranted), she was perplexed when she moved to the U.S. to find herself in the middle of an excess of compliments, superlatives and (in her mind) unwarranted praise and inappropriate familiarity from strangers. This chat is an eye-opener and mind-bender. I loved it.*Spoiler alert… when Batja was a little girl, she asked her mum “am I pretty?” and her Dutch mum replied.. “oh, about average”, being completely serious (and not trying in any way to be hurtful) and in our conversation Batja tells me “her judgement was correct, I am about average looking”.