The Tao (way) of Chinese coping

Cecilia Cheng, Barbara C. Y. Lo and Jasmine H. M. Chio

in Oxford Handbook of Chinese Psychology

Published in print February 2010 | ISBN: 9780199541850
Published online September 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Library of Psychology

The Tao (way) of Chinese coping


In a multiple-country survey on perceived stress among entrepreneurs, Taiwan entrepreneurs were ranked top of the list. Over 60% of the Taiwan participants reported that they have experienced an increased amount of stress over the past year. Entrepreneurs from Hong Kong came second. Although they are on top of the stress rankings, this does not necessarily mean that the Chinese are in danger of psychological problems. This article seeks to explore the unique Chinese ways of coping with stressors. It points out that an extensive review of the literature has revealed that the Chinese are characterized by a greater tendency to use avoidant or emotion-focused coping, greater flexibility in strategy deployment across stressful situations, and a propensity to seek and utilize less social support. This article discusses each of these coping characteristics in the light of traditional cultural beliefs and contemporary cultural theories of psychology.

Keywords: Chinese coping; stressors; emotion-focused coping; stressful situation; personal control

Article.  14355 words. 

Subjects: Psychology ; Social Psychology

Full text: subscription required

How to subscribeRecommend to my Librarian

Buy this work at Oxford University Press »