I just want to apologize first for missing the lecture this week! Unfortunately I was not feeling really well so I was unable to attend 😦 However, I am sure that you all did amazing on your presentations!
Both of the readings this week focused on ethnic identities in adolescent immigrants and the benefits of establish an ethnic identity. The first article by Abu-Rayya (2005) looked at ethnic identities in cases where they have mixed parents living in Israel. It was interesting that they found that if they were living in a host society different than their parents ethnicity, if they identified strongly with either identity (Arab or European) then they had an overall better quality of life and self-esteem. They hypothesized that the participants would identify more with an Arab ethnicity than European and their results supported this hypothesis.
The next reading by Berry, Phinney, Sam, and Vedder (2006) also looked at ethnic identity in youth that are acculturating. They pointed out that identifying with their culture of origin and the new culture through the process of integration is the most successful adaptation that can have psychological well-being benefits. They divided participants into four profiles based on their ethnic identification; national profile in which they were highly oriented to the society they were living in, integration profile in which they identified highly with both their culture of origin and national culture, ethnic profile in which they identified most with their culture of origin, and diffuse profile in which they they were proficient in their own culture but did not identify strongly with it. They found that in terms of discrimination those who experienced less discrimination were in the integration and national profiles.
Unfortunately I cannot discuss how class went, but I found it interesting in the Abu-Rayya article how having an Arab father and European mother lead to a stronger Arab identification in the adolescents. It made me wonder if the mothers were Arab and the fathers were European would they identify more with a European culture? What factors might influence this? I think that it could be because they play a strong role in the family dynamic, so it makes me wonder how this would work in culture where the mother plays a stronger role in the family how this would change, if they would identify more with the mother than the father.
This video looks at a group of people that identify with various ethnic identities and some of the struggles they face in society because they are ‘ethnic’. Some of the issues they discuss are people asking them if they speak a language to help translate just because they look like they are from a certain group, or being told they’re from a certain ethnic group because of their skin colour. I thought it was kind of interesting and could relate back to the readings because these could be factors effecting how someone acculturates. It could easily create confusion for those moving to a new country, or those who have lived here for a while, and possibly have an effect on their psychological well-being. I think it could potential create a discordance between who they think they might be and who people are telling them they are. Have you ever had any experiences where someone assumed you were from a different culture than you were? Why do you think they may have assumed this (for reasons perhaps other than the colour of your skin)? And did it have any impact on what culture you identify with?
The article by Schwartz et al. (2013) looks at the relationship between acculturation and well-being among first and second generation immigrants. Acculturation was defined in terms of heritage and American culture and values (such as being from an individualist or collectivist society). Well-being was defined in terms of subjective, eudaimonic and psychological aspects. The data was collected from 2,774 immigrant students from 6 different ethnic groups. They found that those with strong individualistic values had a better psychological well-being and that those who had a strong sense of identity had a better psychological well-being. Whether they associated more with the American culture or their origin culture or both, they were more likely to have good psychological well-being than those who rejected either culture. They found that there were no significant differences among first and second generation or between gender.
The readings from this week both talked about ethnic identity and how it relates to psychological well-being. Finding that those who have a stronger ethnic identity, regardless of which ethnicity they identify with, have a greater psychological well-being. I chose the youtube video because I thought it might be interesting to look at how people making assumptions might affect their identification and overall well-being. It could potentially weaken their ethnic identity and therefore their overall well-being. What other factors do you think might weaken someone’s ethnic identity? We have touched on various topics in class about factors influencing the acculturation process, so these would also play a role in developing an ethnic identity. Lastly, the article I chose because I thought it might be interesting to test if there was a difference between first and second generation immigrants but they found that there were no significant differences. The article tied in with the readings from this week because it also looked at the impact of ethnic identity on psychological well-being.
Abu-Rayya, H. M. (2005). Ethnic self-identification and psychological well-being among adolescents with European mothers and Arab fathers in Israel. International Journal of Intercultural Relations, 30, 545-556.
Berry, J. W., Phinney, J. S., Sam, D. L., & Vedder, P. (2006). Immigrant youth: Acculturation, identity and adaptation. Applied Psychology: An International Review, 55(3), 303-332.
Schwartz, S. J., Waterman, A. S., Umaña‐Taylor, A. J., Lee, R. M., Kim, S. Y., Vazsonyi, A. T., . . . Williams, M. K. (2013). Acculturation and well‐being among college students from immigrant families. Journal of Clinical Psychology, 69(4), 298-318. doi:http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jclp.21847