Caribbean Journal of Psychology: Vol. 2, Issue 2, 2007

Article 2
Self-Representations of Jamaican Adolescents: Perceived Parental Ideal, Own Ideal and Actual Self

Gail M. Ferguson
Children’s Institute, Department of Clinical and Social Sciences in Psychology
University of Rochester

Eric F. Dubow
Department of Psychology, Bowling Green State University &
Institute for Social Research, University of Michigan


Building on Ferguson (2006), which described the ‘actual’ selves of Jamaican adolescents, 212 traditional high school students in Jamaica (87 boys, 125 girls) also depicted their ‘perceived parental ideal’ and ‘own ideal’ self representations using separate ‘Identity Pies’ (Ferguson, 2006). As hypothesized, based on the intergenerational values transmission perspective, the three self-portraits bore significant resemblance in the percentage of the Identity Pie allotted to each life domain and the relative importance of those domains. Similar to findings with the actual self, both ideal self-portraits (perceived parental ideal and own ideal) were significantly related to academic, emotional and behavioural functioning.