Immigrants

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Immigrants

  1. 1. ImmigrantsDistinguished by their motivation forrelocation and their level ofcommitment to the country ofresettlement
  2. 2. ‘Pulled’ towards a new country• Most significant ‘pull’ is economic opportunity• Migrants may be dissatisfied with theiremployment and come from a lowersocioeconomic environment than non-migrants• Generally relocate with long-termresettlement intentions
  3. 3. Members of plural societies• Overseas born, first-generation settlers shouldbe described as migrants• Second or later generation descendants arereferred to as members of ethnoculturalgroups• In Canada, no single ethnic group constitutes amajority• 4 out of 5 Australians are children ofimmigrants
  4. 4. Immigration and Integration Policies• Pluralism Ideology• Civic Ideology• Assimilation ideology• Ethnist IdeologyMay overlap or shift along a continuum withpluralism diminishing antagonism and ethnistincreasing tensions
  5. 5. Pluralism (Integrationist)• The expectation that immigrants will adoptpublic values of the host society but privatevalues and cultural activities are notregulated by the state (freedoms ofreligion, language etc)• Ideological Pluralism permits thegovernment to offer financial and socialsupport to immigrant groups• Canada’s Multiculturalism Act of 1988
  6. 6. Civic Ideology• Similar to pluralism in its distinction of public andprivate values, demanding respect for the formerand regarding the latter as a matter of privatechoice• State policies are non-interventionist (for allsocial groups) but the rights of groups to organizeactivities promoting cultural maintenance arerecognized• May not support immigrant groups, favoring thecollective interests of the majority• Great Britain’s anti-discrimination laws
  7. 7. Assimilation Ideology• Similar to pluralism and civic with respect topublic and private values• Entitles the intervention of the state in someareas of private values• Assumes immigrants should abandon theircultural and linguistic distinctiveness andadopt those of host community• U.S. ideology until 20th century
  8. 8. Ethnist Ideology (Exclusionist)• Immigrants must adopt the public values oftheir hosts and the state has the right toregulate certain aspects of private values• Citizenship determined by birth or kinship(“German Blood”)• Members of receiving society may not acceptimmigrants as equal partners in nationaldevelopment• Germany, Israel, Japan
  9. 9. Republican Ideology• Variation of assimilationist ideology• The notion of the equality of theuniversal man in France• May be used as a legitimizing tool thatjustifies the suppression of ethnoculturaldifferences deemed backward or divisivefor the unity of the state (Bourhis etal., 1997)
  10. 10. Outcomes• More likely positive when immigrants andmembers of the receiving society share similarattitudes toward acculturation• Adaption is influenced by social-psychologicalphenomena that influence attitudes andbehaviors in multicultural societies
  11. 11. Attitudes towards immigration inAustralia (Goot, 1993)• Members of host society endorse official statepolicies to varying degrees• Though many support immigrants in terms ofaccess and equity, there is little endorsementof cultural pluralism• More members support multiculturalism butmany are caught between two positions
  12. 12. Realistic Threat Theory• 1998 poll revealed that 49% of Canadiansbelieve immigration increases unemploymentamong people already in the country• Majority of Americans are more likely to agreethat immigrants take jobs or governmentassistance than to believe immigrantsstrengthen the country due to hard work andtalent• Explains negative attitudes among hosts
  13. 13. Contact Hypothesis• Intergroup relations are strengthenedbased on equal status and mutualcooperation for achieving common goals• Members of non-dominant groups aremore willing to engage in such contact
  14. 14. Migrants’ attitudes toward culturalethnicity• Likely to be influenced by premigration beliefsand postmigration experiences• Out-group perceptions held by immigrants areshaped by prevailing attitudes in the receivingculture• Russian immigrants to the U.S. and Britishmigrants to South Africa reported morenegative opinions toward blacks aftermigration (Ward, pg 201)
  15. 15. Migrant adaption and links to physicaland mental health problems• Jews from the former Soviet Union reportmore problems/demoralization than Israeli-born settlers of European descent• Chronic illness is greater in foreign-bornsettlers than the native-born population inSweden• Irish immigrants in the U.K. have a higher rateof suicide
  16. 16. Some studies suggest lesspsychopathology among immigrants• Southeast Asian immigrants in the U.K. havelower levels of depression compared to thewhite majority (Berthound & Nazroo, 1997)• Adolescent migrants from third worldcountries in Norway have fewer behavioralproblems than native-born peers (San, 1998)• Methodological and conceptual difficultiessuch as assessment instruments andbias, access to participants etc.
  17. 17. Sociocultural and EconomicAdaptation• Some evidence that social skills ofimmigrants are poorer than native-borns• Related to positive self concept anddecreased feelings of alienation• Majority of migrants settle for economicreasons but often encounter moreobstacles to economic success thannatives
  18. 18. Intergroup Interactions• Perceived discrimination leads to morepsychological distress• Acculturation orientation of biculturalism isrelated to psychological well-being andsatisfaction• Stress & Coping model used widely to accountfor psychological adaptation of migrants
  19. 19. Mixed outcomes of co-ethnic support• Samoan migrants in the U.S. ‘build a cocoon ofSamoan-ness’ that is unsustainable over aperiod of time thus the initial stress-bufferingkin allegiance eventually becomesburdensome and stressful (Barker, 1991)• Conflicting values—communal vs.individualist—lead to physical/psychologicaldisorders
  20. 20. Longitudinal, Comparative Research• Revealed that patterns and predictors ofpsychological adaptation are similar betweennatives and immigrants• Psychological satisfaction is related to lengthof settlement (loneliness of newmigrants), personality factors, social andspousal support

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