This study (1) examined the differences in cultural values and gynecological
health-related perceptions, beliefs, and behaviors between Asian and Anglo American
groups; and (2) tested the effects of message-culture congruency in a health advertising
campaign targeting Asians, by comparing the recipients’ responses to culturallycongruent
message framing vs. culturally-incongruent message framing. An experiment
was conducted with a group of Asian women and a group of Anglo American women,
using three different advertising messages promoting gynecological exams: (1) a message
focused on preventing a disease that does not carry strong social stigma for Asian women
(i.e., cervical cancer) was considered a culturally-congruent message; (2) a message
focused on preventing a disease that carries great social stigma and is considered a taboo
for Asian women (i.e., STDs) was considered a culturally-incongruent message; and (3) a
message focused on preventing common gynecological problems without mentioning any particular symptoms or diseases was considered a culturally-neutral message, and served
as the control condition.
The findings suggest that Asians, compared to Anglo Americans, held stronger
cultural values emphasizing collectivism, women’s traditional roles, and chastity, showed
lower levels of perceived susceptibility to STDs, exhibited greater social stigma and
barrier to getting gynecological exams, and had lower prior gynecological exam rates.
Additionally, culturally more sensitive or congruent message framing tends to generate
better communication outcomes among Asian women. In particular, the culturallycongruent
message, compared to the culturally-incongruent message, was more effective in generating more message-related cognitive responses, more positive attitudes toward
getting gynecological exams, and higher behavioral intention to get gynecological exams
for the Asian group. However, such message-culture congruency effects were not
observed for the Anglo American group.
University of Minnesota M.A. thesis. September 2012. Major: Mass Communication.Advisor: Jisu Huh. 1 computer file (PDF); vi, 117 pages, appendices A-B.
Influence of cultural values on Asian women’s perceptions about gynecological exams and the effects of message-culture congruency in message framing of PSA promoting gynecological exams..
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