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Issues Compr Pediatr Nurs. 2001 Jul-Sep;24(3):193-206.

Cultural marginality: a concept analysis with implications for immigrant adolescents.

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School of Nursing, University of Texas-Houston, Health Science Center, 77030, USA.


Society in the United States is becoming increasingly culturally diverse. In 1996, almost 1 in 10 people living in the United States was a foreign-born immigrant and the number of foreign-born in the population exceeded 25 million. However, the lack of mutual understanding between health care providers and immigrants, particularly children and adolescents, has impeded progress in research and practice for this population. To facilitate nurses' understanding of immigrant adolescents' unique experiences, this article explores the concept of cultural marginality. Cultural margin ality is defined by the author as "situations and feelings of passive betweeness when people exist between two different cultures and do not yet perceive themselves as centrally belonging to either one." Using Walker and Avant's (1995) method as a framework, my article identifies attributes, antecedents, and consequences of cultural marginality in the context of immigrant adolescents' experiences. To clarify the abstract concept, cases are provided that distill meanings of the concept in life. A conceptual model has been synthesized to illustrate relationships among attributes, antecedents, and consequences and to highlight areas for further inquiry. Concept analysis is a critical step for the develop ment of nursing knowledge. The process of concept analysis is demonstrated through clarification of the concept of cultural marginality, which offers guidance for nursing research and practice within the immigrant adolescent population.

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