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In this paper, I critically evaluate the logic underlying Markus and Kitayama's (1991) theory of independent and interdependent self-construals, and examine the evidence that directly tests its major assumptions. On the basis of my review of the studies they cite, and literature from three other sources, I conclude that the evidence severely challenges the validity of their theoretical framework for explaining observed national differences in psychological phenomena. I offer some ideas about alternative methodologies for research in this important area of psychology that may aid in developing and testing theories of culture and self in the future.