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Genet Soc Gen Psychol Monogr. 1994 Feb;120(1):101-15.

Acculturation and alienation of Soviet Jewish refugees in the United States.

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  • 1Refugee Mental Health Branch, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, Rockville, MD 20857.


We examined the relationship of identity and behavioral acculturation to alienation among 49 Soviet Jewish refugees in the United States in 1987. For all the subjects, acculturation was best described as a unilevel rather than a bilevel or multilevel process, because a negative relationship was found between acculturation and the American and Russian cultures. For women, finding an American identity was related to length of residence, whereas holding on to a Russian identity as well as behavioral acculturation predicted alienation. For men, however, a multicultural process appeared to exist with respect to behavioral acculturation, although holding on to a Russian identity was positively related to alienation. Thus, men were able to continue to participate in Russian-oriented activities without feeling alienated, and this participation appeared to increase with length of residence in the United States.

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