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Child Adolesc Psychiatr Clin N Am. 2010 Oct;19(4):697-717. doi: 10.1016/j.chc.2010.07.003.

Language, culture, and adaptation in immigrant children.

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Child Language & Developmental Psychiatry Research Lab, Judge Baker Children's Center, 53 Parker Hill Avenue, Boston, MA 02120-3225, USA.


In this article the authors discuss first why it is crucial, from a clinical and public health perspective, to better understand the development as well as risk and protection processes for the mental health of immigrant children. The authors then shift focus to the main tenet of this article, namely, that specific aspects of the dual language development of immigrant children are highly relevant to their mental health and adaptation. This argument is illustrated with empirical studies on Latino immigrant children, as they represent the majority of immigrant children in America and as a way of exemplifying the risks and circumstances that are potentially shared by other immigrant groups. Finally, the authors conceptually differentiate dual language development and its mental health impact from the dual-culture (bicultural) development and circumstance of immigrant children and their mental health impact.

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