This chapter considers more general, distal antecedents of the constructs and then reviews information about the geographic distribution of individualism and collectivism. The advantages of collectivism are most clear when resources are minimal but become less clear as societies become more complex and differentiated. The importance of social class and affluence as a determinant of individualism is very great. American individualism has been different at various historical periods, making any description rather difficult. On the whole it is vertical, especially in business and political settings, but moving in the horizontal direction. Collectivism may result in the person feeling good about doing what norms require, often increases the probability of conformity to group norms, and results in the development of strong traditions. Similarly, individualism rewards the individual with a sense of personal control, freedom from restraints, and enjoyment of doing what she wishes, and can become habitual and automatic.