Acculturation in the discourse of immigrants and receiving community members: Results from a cross-national qualitative study.

This study explores the bidirectional and interactional process of acculturation from the perspectives of immigrants and receiving community members (RCMs). Our aim was to understand the experiences and interactions of different ethno-cultural groups and their impact on the functioning and dynamics of multicultural communities. We conducted a cross-national, cross-cultural study of acculturation processes, using interviews collected across two countries (Italy: urban regions of Torino and Lecce; U.S.: Baltimore/Washington corridor) and three distinct groups of immigrants–Moroccans and Albanians in Italy and Latin Americans in the United States–and RCMs in Italy and the United States. Findings show that acculturation is a complex, situated, and dynamic process, and is generally conceived as an unbalanced and individual process of accommodation, which expects the immigrant alone to adapt to the new context. The boundaries among traditionally explored acculturation strategies were blurred and while integration was the most frequently discussed strategy, it often referenced a “soft†assimilation, limited mostly to public domains. Some differences emerged between ethnic groups and generation of immigration as well as among RCMs who differed by level of contact with immigrants. The need for more flexible models and for a critical perspective on acculturation is discussed. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2019 APA, all rights reserved)