Personality structure and social style in macaques

Adams, Mark James and Majolo, Bonaventura and Ostner, Julia and Schülke, Oliver and De Marco, Arianna and Thierry, Bernard and Widdig, Anja and Gerald, Melissa S. and Weiss, Alexander (2015) Personality structure and social style in macaques. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 109 (2). pp. 338-353. ISSN 0022-3514

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Abstract

Why regularities in personality can be described with particular dimensions is a basic question in differential psychology. Nonhuman primates can also be characterized in terms of personality structure. Comparative approaches can help reveal phylogenetic constraints and social and ecological patterns associated with the presence or absence of specific personality dimensions. We sought to determine how different personality structures are related to interspecific variation in social style. Specifically, we examined this question in six different species of macaques, as macaque social style is well-characterized and can be categorized on a spectrum of despotic (grade 1) versus tolerant (grade 4) social styles. We derived personality structures from adjectival ratings of Japanese (Macaca fuscata; grade 1), Assamese (M. assamensis; grade 2), Barbary (M. sylvanus; grade 3), Tonkean (M. tonkeana; grade 4), and crested (M. nigra; grade 4) macaques and compared these species to rhesus macaques (M. mulatta; grade 1) whose personality has previously been characterized. Using a non-parametric method, fuzzy set analysis, to identify commonalities in personality dimensions across species, we found that all but one species exhibited consistently defined Friendliness and Openness dimensions, but that similarities in personality dimensions capturing aggression and social competence reflect similarities in social styles. These findings suggest that social and phylogenetic relationships contribute to the origin, maintenance, and diversification of personality.

Keywords:animal personality, dominance, comparative, fuzzy set, social style, Old World monkey, macaque, bmjgoldcheck, NotOAChecked
Subjects:C Biological Sciences > C120 Behavioural Biology
C Biological Sciences > C800 Psychology
Divisions:College of Social Science > School of Psychology
ID Code:17568
Deposited On:03 Jun 2015 14:33

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