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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Using the dual control model to understand Chinese and Western cultural influences in sexuality for university women and men Dang, Silvain Sili


Young Chinese men and women living in Canada frequently report lower levels of sexual response and behaviour compared to their Euro-Caucasian peers. These differences are likely related to cultural factors and acculturation, but has not been well-integrated into more general models of sexual response regulation. The current investigation used the dual control model to organize and better understand these patterns in three studies in university men and women of Chinese and Euro-Caucasian descent. The first study examined whether dual control processes of sexual excitation and inhibition were applicable to between-group ethnic differences in sexual response and behaviour. Lower sexual excitation explained a significant proportion of the difference in mean sexual response and activity between Chinese and Euro-Caucasian women, and this effect was mediated by sexual attitudes. Sexual attitudes was separately associated with higher sexual inhibition and lower dyadic sexual response and activity in Chinese compared to Euro-Caucasian men. The second study examined the association of heritage and mainstream acculturation with sexual excitation, inhibition, attitudes, response, and activity among the Chinese individuals. For heterosexual men and women, mainstream acculturation was the primary predictor of sexuality variables, while heritage acculturation had a moderating role. Exploratory analyses for non-heterosexual Chinese men and women were also conducted; each sexual orientation group displayed different patterns of associations between acculturation factors and sexuality variables. The third study examined whether between-group differences in sexual excitation and inhibition were associated with sexual dysfunctions, asexuality, or sexual abstinence. The results did not conclusively suggest more dysfunction in Chinese women, but did suggest more dysfunction in Chinese men. Abstinence versus engagement in partnered sex had a moderation role on other outcomes. Theoretical implications for understanding the role ofiv Chinese culture, and culture in general, in regulating sexual response and behaviours were discussed for all three studies. Clinical implications for treatment of sexual concerns in young Chinese men and women were also discussed.

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