In this study, independent and interactive effects of alcohol drinking and smoking on the function of frontal lobe in middle- and elderly-Japanese community dwellers were examined. The participants were 487 health individuals aged 40 to 86 years old. The letter fluency test to measures verbal executive function, and the D-CAT to measures information processing speed and sustain of attention were used as the measures of cognitive function. Analyses including age and years of education as covariates indicated that the intensity of drinking tended to influence on information processing speed, that is, light to moderate drinkers showed good performance in comparison with abstainers or heavy drinkers. The intensity of smoking also made a significant difference on the results of the letter fluency test, and light smokers showed a higher-level performance compared with other groups.
This study investigated the effect of backchannel utterances as a strategy to facilitate idea-generation when a listener was copresent with a speaker who was engaged in divergent thinking. Twenty-four female undergraduate students participated in the main experiment which used a think-aloud method. Independent variables were frequency of backchannel utterances from listeners, and the task category of divergent thinking ( prediction and resolution ). Dependent variables are the number of ideas generated , speaking time, motivation of speakers, and speakers' cognition of listeners' interest in, agreement with, and praise of speakers' ideas. The main results of 2 x 2 ( frequency of backchannel utterances x task category ) ANOVAs were as follows: (1)The main effect of backchannel utterances was significant in all the dependent variables. (2)The interaction between the two factors was significant only in the number of ideas generated, that is, the effect of backchannel utterances was larger in the prediction task. An additional experiment was conducted to obtain a baseline of the number of ideas generated. Twelve female undergraduates engaged in the same tasks in the main experiment without listeners. The performance level was close to that of the low frequency condition. This result eliminated the possibility that low frequency of backchannel utterances inhibited idea-generation. The present findings showed the effectiveness of backchannel utterances as a strategy for facilitating idea-generation. The interaction of backchannel utterances and the task category was interpreted in terms of the possibility that the two kinds of tasks had different thinking processes. Through the fact that the interaction was found only in idea-generation, it was suggested that backchannel utterances had two influencing pathways; one was facilitating positive social cognition and motivation which led to speaking more, and the other was activating idea-generation itself.
This study examined the effects of need for "richness in life" on the need for residential environment. Two-hundred and fifty house wives participated in the study and answered the questions to assess the important conditions for enabling "richness in life" and requirement for residential environment to enable the richness in life. A factor analysis for the enabling conditions of richness revealed the seven-factor structure (richness in family relationship and well-being, abundance of material resource, stability and prosperity of work, good interpersonal relations, luxury, and fashionable life style), thus suggested the complexity of the conception for richness. Furthermore, a structural equation analysis revealed that the factors representing the materialistic aspect of richness increase the need for exterior and amplitude of the housing, whereas the factors representing the interpersonal aspect of richness increase the need for the conditions of residential locations. Discussion argued that future studies should include the variables to account for the way people actualize the psychological need for "richness in life" by adopting certain requirements in residential environment.
A series of political arguments during negotiation and ratification process of the London Naval Treaty of 1930 was one of the most serious domestic political situations in modern Japan within the Cabinet, the Foreign Ministry, the Navy, the political parties such as Minseito and Seiyukai, the Privy Council, the Kizoku-in, the Army and civilian right wingers. The London treaty fight deeply affected the fate of Japan. This study examines the policy argument over the treaty, focusing on Prime Minister Hamaguchi who was a main player to press for the treaty. It has been pointed out that Hamaguchi was moved by budgetary concerns but those who were against ratification of the treaty like Admiral Kato Kanji, were opposed him from military point of view. My interpretation, however, is that there are other significant factors: Hamaguchi's and Kato's argument over how Japanese policy toward the United States and China should be, or the future of Japan should be as a member of international community. Hamaguchi and his opponents' ideas were so different, and that was one of the reasons for their serious conflict. After all the political argument within Japan, it can be said Japan's new state system operated by political parties including the Navy, the Army, and Privy Council was eventually working under the Hamaguchi Cabinet. At the same time, ratification of the London Naval Treaty of 1930 made it possible for Japan to become one of the leading countries in international society, along with the United States and Britain.
The awareness structures towards lifelong learning organized for the elderly people by the local governments were investigated. According to the radical changes in modern Japanese society, the needs of lifelong education have increased among Japanese elderly people. By the political advises, almost local governments, higher educational organizations have offered various kinds of external schools or classes for community dwellers. However, far less than half population has joined to these external schools and classes. Present study was aimed to investigate the possible reasons and factors why community dwellers do not participate in lifelong education schools and classes. Questionnaires consisted of the items which relates to the reason of not to participate, self-efficacy levels and intention of participation of social events were give to 133 community dwellers in satellite city of Osaka. The results showed that levels of self-efficacy of community dwellers strongly correlate to the levels of participation, and some of high self-efficacy people feel that they have less times and high financial cost make them difficult to participate. The results also showed the importance to analyze psychological factors why community dwellers participate and not participate in the events organized by the local government.