Personality, threat, and cognitive and emotional reactions to stressful intercultural situations

K.I. Van der Zee*, Jan Pieter Van Oudenhoven, Ellen De Grijs

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to JournalReview articleAcademicpeer-review


The present study examined individual differences in appraisal of and affective reactions to intercultural situations. A sample of 160 students filled out the Multicultural Personality Questionnaire (MPQ) and participated in an experiment in which they received a description of an intercultural situation that was either high or low in potential stressfulness. Individuals with high scores on the intercultural dimensions appraised the potentially stressful situation more positively and showed more positive and less negative reactions to the situation than did individuals with low scores on the MPQ. Interestingly, following a Terror Management Intervention (TMI), individual differences in emotional reactions to intercultural situations disappeared. The results could only partially be replicated using a general personality questionnaire, suggesting that these findings have at least some specificity to intercultural personality dimensions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1069-1096
Number of pages28
JournalJournal of Personality
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2004


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