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Title: Acculturation, identity, and intergroup relations of Mexican Americans and European Americans
Author: Bergman, M. M.
Awarding Body: University of Cambridge
Current Institution: University of Cambridge
Date of Award: 1998
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This thesis explores the dynamic interaction between identity and intergroup relations. More specifically, it focuses on how members from a particular ethnic group represent their self, their ingroup, and a salient outgroup, and how these representations are linked to attitudinal and behavioural statements toward that outgroup. The first four chapters of this work examine theoretical, conceptual, and methodological issues, and suggest possible improvements with respect to social psychological theory and research on ethnic identity and intergroup relations, especially as these relate to intergroup contacts and acculturation. While ethnicity is generally understood as a powerful explanatory variable - accounting for variations in attitudes, behaviours, and identities - it is argued here that within-group variations deserve equal attention, since these may reveal a considerable divergence in identities and experiences of intergroup relations despite the constraints imposed by ethnic group membership. Such bifocal considerations provide important insights into the dynamics of identity formation as well as cooperation and conflicts between groups. The subsequent three chapters apply these theoretical and methodological proposals empirically. More precisely, the empirical research explores the propositions with data collected from Mexican Americans and European Americans residing in the south-west of the US. Four types of evidence are used for the purposes of this thesis. Existing literature not only provides an account of the variations of identity and intergroup relations, but also exemplifies variations in framing and positioning in terms of identity and intergroup relations. Ethnographic data reveal additional insights into the structures and processes considered in this work. Third, interview data serve not only to formulate theory and hypotheses but also to refine the interpretation of the statistical results. Finally, questionnaire responses from 201 European Americans and 93 Mexican Americans permit testing and exploration of the theoretical and conceptual propositions.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available