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    Does multilingualism shape personality? An exploratory investigation

    Dewaele, Jean-Marc and Botes, E. (2020) Does multilingualism shape personality? An exploratory investigation. International Journal of Bilingualism 24 (4), pp. 811-823. ISSN 1367-0069.

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    Aims and objectives: Personality psychologists argue that personality is the result of nature and nurture. However, relatively little attention has been paid to the latter. The present study considers the effect of multilingualism, a social factor, on personality. Methodology: 651 multilinguals from around the world filled out an online questionnaire containing questions about participants’ language profile and a so-called “Big 5” questionnaire: the Multicultural Personality Questionnaire (Short Form) (van der Zee et al., 2013). Data and analysis: Correlation analyses were run between the level of multilingualism of participants and their scores on five personality traits. A parceled structural equation model was then used to examine the influence of multilingualism on three personality subscales. Findings: The model indicated significant weak, positive path coefficients between the level of multilingualism and Flexibility, Social Initiative and Open-mindedness. Significance: It confirms and expands earlier research that showed that multilingualism/multiculturalism can be considered to be enduring environmental factors that contribute to the shaping of personality profiles.


    Item Type: Article
    School: School of Social Sciences, History and Philosophy > Applied Linguistics and Communication (to 2020)
    Depositing User: Jean-Marc Dewaele
    Date Deposited: 13 Nov 2019 12:22
    Last Modified: 09 Jun 2021 23:24


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