Cultural assimilation
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Cultural assimilation is the process in which a
minority group The term 'minority group' has different usages depending on the context. According to its common usage, a minority group can simply be understood in terms of demographic sizes within a population: i.e. a group in society with the least number o ...
or
culture Culture () is an umbrella term which encompasses the social behavior, institutions, and Social norm, norms found in human Society, societies, as well as the knowledge, beliefs, arts, laws, Social norm, customs, capabilities, and habits of the ...
comes to resemble a society's majority group or assume the values, behaviors, and beliefs of another group whether fully or partially. The different types of cultural assimilation include full assimilation and
forced assimilation Forced assimilation is an involuntary process of cultural assimilation of religious or ethnic minority groups during which they are forced to adopt language, Identity (social science), identity, Social norm, norms, mores, Convention (norm), custom ...
; full assimilation being the most prevalent of the two, as it occurs spontaneously. During cultural assimilation, minority groups are expected to adapt to the everyday practices of the dominant culture through language and appearance as well as via more significant socioeconomic factors such as absorption into the local cultural and employment community. Some types of cultural assimilation resemble
acculturation Acculturation is a process of social, psychological, and cultural change that stems from the balancing of two cultures while adapting to the prevailing culture of the society. Acculturation is a process in which an individual adopts, acquires and ...
in which a minority group or culture completely assimilates into the
dominant culture A dominant culture is a cultural practice that is dominant within a particular political, social or economic entity, in which multiple cultures co-exist. It may refer to a language Language is a structured system of communication. The s ...
in which defining characteristics of the minority culture are less obverse or outright disappear; while in other types of cultural assimilation such as cultural integration mostly found in
multicultural The term multiculturalism has a range of meanings within the contexts of sociology, political philosophy, and colloquial use. In sociology and in everyday usage, it is a synonym for "Pluralism (political theory), ethnic pluralism", with the tw ...
communities, a minority group within a given society adopts aspects of the
dominant culture A dominant culture is a cultural practice that is dominant within a particular political, social or economic entity, in which multiple cultures co-exist. It may refer to a language Language is a structured system of communication. The s ...
through either
cultural diffusion In cultural anthropology and cultural geography, cultural diffusion, as conceptualized by Leo Frobenius in his 1897/98 publication ''Der westafrikanische Kulturkreis'', is the spread of culture, cultural items—such as ideas, fashion, styles, rel ...
or for practical reason like adapting to another society's
social norms Social norms are shared standards of acceptance, acceptable behavior by groups. Social norms can both be informal understandings that govern the behavior of members of a society, as well as be codified into wikt:rule, rules and laws. Social normat ...
while retaining their original culture. A conceptualization describes cultural assimilation as similar to acculturation while another merely considers the former as one of the latter's phases. Throughout history there have been different forms of cultural assimilation examples of types of acculturation include voluntary and involuntary assimilation. Assimilation could also involve the so-called additive acculturation wherein, instead of replacing the ancestral culture, an individual expands their existing cultural repertoire.


Overview

Cultural assimilation may involve either a quick or a gradual change depending on the circumstances of the group. Full assimilation occurs when members of a society become indistinguishable from those of the dominant group in society. Whether a given group should assimilate is often disputed by both members of the group and others in society. Cultural assimilation does not guarantee social alikeness. Geographical and other natural barriers between cultures, even if created by the predominant culture, may be culturally different. Cultural assimilation can happen either spontaneously or forcibly, the latter when more dominant cultures use various means aimed at
forced assimilation Forced assimilation is an involuntary process of cultural assimilation of religious or ethnic minority groups during which they are forced to adopt language, Identity (social science), identity, Social norm, norms, mores, Convention (norm), custom ...
. Various types of assimilation, including forced cultural assimilation, are particularly relevant regarding Indigenous groups during colonialism taking place between the 18th, 19th, and 20th centuries. This type of assimilation included religious conversion, separation of families, changes of gender roles, division of property among foreign power, elimination of local economies, and lack of sustainable food supply. Whether via colonialism or within one nation, methods of forced assimilation are often unsustainable, leading to revolts and collapses of power to maintain control over cultural norms. Often, cultures that are forced into different cultural practices through forced cultural assimilation will revert to their native practices and religions that differ from the forced cultural values of other dominant powers. In addition throughout history, voluntary assimilation is often in response to pressure from a more predominant culture, and conformity is a solution for people to remain in safety. An example of voluntary cultural assimilation would be during the
Spanish Inquisition The Tribunal of the Holy Office of the Inquisition ( es, Tribunal del Santo Oficio de la Inquisición), commonly known as the Spanish Inquisition ( es, Inquisición española), was established in 1478 by the Catholic Monarchs of Spain, Cathol ...
when Jews and Muslims accepted the Roman Catholic Church as their religion, meanwhile, in private, many people still practiced their traditional religions. This type of assimilation is used to convince a dominant power that a culture has peacefully assimilated yet often voluntary assimilation does not mean the group fully conforms to the accepted cultural beliefs. The term "assimilation" is often used about not only indigenous groups but also immigrants settled in a new land. A new culture and new attitudes toward the original culture are obtained through contact and communication. Assimilation assumes that a relatively-tenuous culture gets to be united into one unified culture. That process happens through contact and accommodation between each culture. The current definition of assimilation is usually used to refer to immigrants, but in
multiculturalism The term multiculturalism has a range of meanings within the contexts of sociology, political philosophy, and colloquial use. In sociology and in everyday usage, it is a synonym for "Pluralism (political theory), ethnic pluralism", with the tw ...
, cultural assimilation can happen all over the world and within varying social contexts and is not limited to specific areas.


Indigenous assimilation


Australia

Legislation applying the policy of "protection" over
Aboriginal Australians Aboriginal Australians are the various Indigenous peoples of the Mainland Australia, Australian mainland and many of its islands, such as Tasmania, Fraser Island, Hinchinbrook Island, the Tiwi Islands, and Groote Eylandt, but excluding the T ...
(separating them from white society) was adopted in some
states and territories of Australia The states and territories are federated state, federated administrative divisions in Australia, ruled by regional governments that constitute the second level of governance between the Australian Government, federal government and local gov ...
when they were still colonies, before the
federation of Australia The Federation of Australia was the process by which the six separate British self-governing colony, self-governing colonies of Colony of Queensland, Queensland, Colony of New South Wales, New South Wales, Victoria (Australia)#Colonial Victo ...
: in the Victoria in 1867,
Western Australia Western Australia (commonly abbreviated as WA) is a state of Australia occupying the western percent of the land area of Australia excluding external territories. It is bounded by the Indian Ocean to the north and west, the Southern Ocean to th ...
in 1886, and
Queensland ) , nickname = Sunshine State , image_map = Queensland in Australia.svg , map_caption = Location of Queensland in Australia , subdivision_type = Country , subdivision_name = Australia , established_title = Before federation , established_ ...
in 1897. After federation,
New South Wales ) , nickname = , image_map = New South Wales in Australia.svg , map_caption = Location of New South Wales in AustraliaCoordinates: , subdivision_type = Country , subdivision_name = Australia , established_title = Before federation , es ...
crafted their policy in 1909,
South Australia South Australia (commonly abbreviated as SA) is a States and territories of Australia, state in the southern central part of Australia. It covers some of the most arid parts of the country. With a total land area of , it is the fourth-largest o ...
and the
Northern Territory The Northern Territory (commonly abbreviated as NT; formally the Northern Territory of Australia) is an states and territories of Australia, Australian territory in the central and central northern regions of Australia. The Northern Territory ...
(which was under the control and of South Australia at the time) in 1910–11.
Mission station A Christian mission is an organized effort for the propagation of the Christian faith. Missions involve sending individuals and groups across boundaries, most commonly geographical boundaries, to carry on evangelism or other activities, such as ...
s missions and Government-run
Aboriginal reserve An Aboriginal reserve, also called simply reserve, was a government-sanctioned settlement for Aboriginal Australians, created under various state and federal legislation. Along with missions and other institutions, they were used from the 19th ...
s were created, and Aboriginal people moved onto them. Legislation restricted their movement, prohibited alcohol use and regulated employment. The policies were reinforced in the first half of the 20th century (when it was realized that Aboriginal people would not die out or be fully absorbed in white society) such as in the provisions of the ''
Welfare Ordinance 1953 The ''Northern Territory Aboriginals Act 1910'' was an Act of the South Australian parliament (Act no. 1024/1910), assented to on 7 December 1910. The Act established the Northern Territory Aboriginals Department, to be responsible for the contro ...
'', in which Aboriginal people were made
wards of the state In law, a ward is a minor (law), minor or incapacitated adult placed under the protection of a legal guardian or government entity, such as a court. Such a person may be referenced as a "ward of the court". Overview The wardship jurisdiction is a ...
. "Part-Aboriginal" (known as
half-caste Half-caste (an offensive term for the offspring of parents of different racial groups or cultures) is a term used for individuals of multiracial descent. It is derived from the term ''caste Caste is a form of social stratification cha ...
) children were forcibly removed from their parents in order to educate them in European ways; the girls were often trained to be
domestic servant A domestic worker or domestic servant is a person who works within the scope of a residence. The term "domestic service" applies to the equivalent occupational category. In traditional English contexts, such a person was said to be "in service ...
s. The protectionist policies were discontinued, and assimilation policies took over. These proposed that "full-blood"
Indigenous Australians Indigenous Australians or Australian First Nations are people with familial heritage from, and membership in, the ethnic groups that lived in Australia before History of Australia (1788–1850), British colonisation. They consist of two distin ...
should be allowed to “die out”, while "half-castes" were encouraged to assimilate into the white community. Indigenous people were regarded as inferior to white people by these policies, and often experienced discrimination in the predominantly white towns after having to move to seek work. Between 1910 and 1970, several generations of Indigenous children were removed from their parents, and have become known as the
Stolen Generations The Stolen Generations (also known as Stolen Children) were the children of Aboriginal Australians, Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders, Torres Strait Islander descent who were removed from their families by the Australian Gover ...
. The policy has done lasting damage to individuals, family and Indigenous culture.


Canada 1800s–1990s: Forced assimilation

During the 19th and 20th centuries, and continuing until 1996, when the last Canadian Indian residential school was closed, the Canadian government, aided by Christian Churches began a campaign to forcibly assimilate
Indigenous peoples in Canada In Canada, Indigenous groups comprise the First Nations in Canada, First Nations, Inuit and Métis people in Canada, Métis. Although ''Indian'' is a term still commonly used in legal documents, the descriptors ''Indian'' and ''Eskimo'' have fal ...
. The government consolidated power over Indigenous land through treaties and the use of force, eventually isolating most Indigenous peoples to reserves. Marriage practices and spiritual ceremonies were banned, and spiritual leaders were imprisoned. Additionally, the Canadian government instituted an extensive residential school system to assimilate children. Indigenous children were separated from their families and no longer permitted to express their culture at these new schools. They were not allowed to speak their language or practice their own traditions without receiving punishment. There were many cases in which violent or sexual abuse by the Christian church was committed. The
Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada The Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada (TRC; french: Commission de vérité et réconciliation du Canada []) was a truth and reconciliation commission active in Canada from 2008 to 2015, organized by the parties of the Indian Residen ...
concluded that this effort amounted to cultural genocide. The schools actively worked to alienate children from their cultural roots. Students were prohibited from speaking their native languages, were regularly abused, and were arranged marriages by the government after their graduation. The explicit goal of the Canadian government, through the Catholic and Anglican churches, was to completely assimilate Indigenous peoples into broader Canadian society and destroy all traces of their native history.


Brazil

In January 2019, newly elected
Brazil Brazil ( pt, Brasil; ), officially the Federative Republic of Brazil (Portuguese: ), is the largest country in both South America South America is a continent entirely in the Western Hemisphere and mostly in the Southern Hemisphere, ...
's president
Jair Bolsonaro Jair Messias Bolsonaro (; born 21 March 1955) is a Brazilian politician and retired military officer who has been the 38th president of Brazil since 1 January 2019. He was 2018 Brazilian general election, elected in 2018 as a member of the Soci ...
has stripped the Indigenous affairs agency
FUNAI is a Japanese consumer electronics company headquartered in Daitō, Osaka, Daitō, Osaka Prefecture, Osaka. Apart from producing its own branded electronic products, it is also an Original equipment manufacturer, OEM providing assembled televis ...
of the responsibility to identify and demarcate Indigenous lands. He argued that those territories have very tiny isolated populations and proposed to integrate them into the larger Brazilian society. According to the
Survival International Survival International is a human rights organisation formed in 1969, a London based charity that campaigns for the collective rights, rights of indigenous peoples, indigenous and/or tribal peoples and uncontacted peoples. The organisation's ca ...
, "Taking responsibility for Indigenous land demarcation away from FUNAI, the Indian affairs department, and giving it to the Agriculture Ministry is virtually a declaration of open warfare against Brazil’s tribal peoples."


Latin America

A major contributor to cultural assimilation in South America began during exploration and colonialism that often is thought by Bartolomé de Las Casas to begin in 1492 when Europeans began to explore the Atlantic in search of "the Indies", leading to the discovery of the Americas. Europe remained dominant over the Americas' Indigenous populations as resources such as labor, natural resources i.e. lumber, copper, gold, silver, and agricultural products flooded into Europe, yet these gains were one-sided, as Indigenous groups did not benefit from trade deals with colonial powers. In addition to this, colonial metropoles such as Portugal and Spain required that colonies in South America assimilate to European customs – such as following the Holy
Roman Catholic Church The Catholic Church, also known as the Roman Catholic Church, is the largest Christian church, with 1.3 billion baptized Catholics worldwide . It is among the world's oldest and largest international institutions, and has played a ...
, acceptance of Spanish or Portuguese over Indigenous languages and accepting European-style government. Through forced cultural assimilation, colonial powers such as Spain used methods of violence to assert cultural dominance over Indigenous populations. One example occurred in 1519 when the Spanish explorer
Hernán Cortés Hernán Cortés de Monroy y Pizarro Altamirano, 1st Marquess of the Valley of Oaxaca (; ; 1485 – December 2, 1547) was a Spanish ''conquistador'' who led an expedition that caused the Spanish conquest of the Aztec Empire, fall of the Aztec E ...
reached
Tenochtitlán , ; es, Tenochtitlan also known as Mexico-Tenochtitlan, ; es, México-Tenochtitlan was a large Mexican in what is now the historic center of Mexico City The historic center of Mexico City ( es, Centro Histórico de la Ciudad de Méxic ...
– the original capital of the Aztec Empire in Mexico. After discovering that the Aztecs practiced human sacrifice, Cortés killed high-ranked Aztecs and held
Moctezuma II Moctezuma Xocoyotzin ( – 29 June 1520; Help:IPA/Nahuatl, oteːkˈsoːmaḁ ʃoːkoˈjoːt͡sĩn̥), nci-IPA, Motēuczōmah Xōcoyōtzin, moteːkʷˈsoːma ʃoːkoˈjoːtsin variant spellings include Motewksomah, Motecuhzomatzin, Montezuma ...
, the Aztec ruler, captive. Shortly after, Cortés began creating alliances to resume power in Tenochtitlán and renamed it Mexico City. Without taking away power through murder and spread of infectious diseases the Spanish
conquistadores Conquistadors (, ) or conquistadores (, ; meaning 'conquerors') were the explorer-soldiers of the Spanish Empire, Spanish and Portuguese Empires of the 15th and 16th centuries. During the Age of Discovery, conquistadors sailed beyond Europe to ...
(relatively small in number) would not have been able to take over Mexico and convert many people to Catholicism and slavery. While Spaniards influenced linguistic and religious cultural assimilation among Indigenous peoples in South America during colonialism, many Indigenous languages such as the Incan language Quechua are still used in places such as Peru to this day by at least 4 million people.


New Zealand

In the course of the colonization of New Zealand from the late-18th century onwards, assimilation of the indigenous Maori population to the culture of incoming European visitors and settlers at first occurred spontaneously. Genetic assimilation commenced early and continued – the 1961
New Zealand census The New Zealand Census of Population and Dwellings ( mi, Te Tatauranga o ngā Tāngata Huri Noa i Aotearoa me ō rātou Whare Noho) is a national population and housing census conducted by government department Statistics New Zealand every five y ...
classified only 62.2% of Māori as "full-blood Maoris". (Compare Pākehā Māori.) Linguistic assimilation also occurred early and ongoingly: European settler populations adopted and adapted Māori words, while European languages affected Māori vocabulary (and possibly phonology). In the 19th century colonial governments ''de facto'' encouraged assimilation; by the late-20th century policies favored supporting bicultural development. Māori readily and early adopted some aspects of European-borne
material culture Material culture is the aspect of social reality grounded in the objects and architecture Architecture is the art and technique of designing and building, as distinguished from the skills associated with construction. It is both the proces ...
(metals,
musket A musket is a muzzle-loaded long gun that appeared as a smoothbore weapon in the early 16th century, at first as a heavier variant of the arquebus, capable of penetrating plate armour Plate armour is a historical type of personal body a ...
s, potatoes) relatively rapidly. Imported ideas – such as writing, Christianity,
monarchy A monarchy is a government#Forms, form of government in which a person, the monarch, is head of state for life or until abdication. The legitimacy (political)#monarchy, political legitimacy and authority of the monarch may vary from restric ...
,
sectarianism Sectarianism is a political or cultural conflict between two groups which are often related to the form of government which they live under. Prejudice, discrimination, or hatred can arise in these conflicts, depending on the political status quo ...
, everyday European-style clothing, or disapproval of slavery – spread more slowly. Later developments (socialism, anti-colonialist theory,
New Age New Age is a range of Spirituality, spiritual or Religion, religious practices and beliefs which rapidly grew in Western world, Western society during the early 1970s. Its highly eclecticism, eclectic and unsystematic structure makes a precise d ...
ideas) have proven more internationally mobile. One long-standing view presents Māori communalism as unassimilated with European-style
individualism Individualism is the Ethics, moral stance, political philosophy, ideology and social outlook that emphasizes the intrinsic worth of the individual. Individualists promote the exercise of one's goals and desires and to value independence and self ...
.


Immigrant assimilation

Social scientists rely on four primary benchmarks to assess immigrant assimilation:
socioeconomic status Socioeconomic status (SES) is an economic and sociological combined total measure of a person's work experience and of an individual's or family's economic access to resources and social position in relation to others. When analyzing a family's ...
, geographic distribution,
second language A person's second language, or L2, is a language that is not the First language, native language (first language or L1) of the speaker, but is learned later. A second language may be a neighbouring language, another language of the speaker's home ...
attainment, and intermarriage. William A.V. Clark defines immigrant assimilation in the United States as "a way of understanding the social dynamics of American society and that it is the process that occurs spontaneously and often unintended in the course of interaction between majority and
minority groups The term 'minority group' has different usages depending on the context. According to its common usage, a minority group can simply be understood in terms of demographic sizes within a population: i.e. a group in society with the least number o ...
." Studies have also noted the positive effects of immigrant assimilation. A study by Bleakley and Chin (2010) found that people who arrived at or before the age of nine from non-English speaking countries tend to speak English at a similar level as those from English speaking countries. Conversely, those who arrived after nine from non- English speaking countries have much lower speaking proficiency and this increases linearly with age at arrival. The study also noted sociocultural impacts such as those with better English skills are less likely to be currently married, more likely to divorce, have fewer children, and have spouses closer to their age. A 2014 study done by Verkuyten found that immigrant children who adapt through integration or assimilation are received more positively by their peers than those who adapt through marginalization or separation.


Perspective of dominant culture

There has been little to no existing research or evidence that demonstrates whether and how immigrant's mobility gains—assimilating to a dominant country such as language ability, socioeconomic status etc.— causes changes in the perception of those who were born in the dominant country. This essential type of research provides information on how immigrants are accepted into dominant countries. In an article by Ariela Schachter, titled "From "different" to "similar": an experimental approach to understanding assimilation", a survey was taken of white American citizens to view their perception of immigrants who now resided in the United States. The survey indicated the whites tolerated immigrants in their home country. White natives are open to having "structural" relation with the immigrants-origin individuals, for instance, friends and neighbors; however, this was with the exception of black immigrants and natives and undocumented immigrants. However, at the same time, white Americans viewed all non-white Americans, regardless of legal status, as dissimilar. A similar journal by Jens Hainmueller and Daniel J. Hopkins titled "The Hidden American Immigration Consensus: A Conjoint Analysis of Attitudes toward Immigrants" confirmed similar attitudes towards immigrants. The researchers used an experiment to reach their goal which was to test nine theoretical relevant attributes of hypothetical immigrants. Asking a population-based sample of U.S citizens to decide between pairs of immigrants applying for admission to the United States, the U.S citizen would see an application with information for two immigrants including notes about their education status, country, origin, and other attributes. The results showed Americans viewed educated immigrants in high-status jobs favourably, whereas they view the following groups unfavourably: those who lack plans to work, those who entered without authorization, those who are not fluent in English and those of Iraqi descent.


Adaptation to new country

As the number of international students entering the US has increased, so has the number of international students in US colleges and universities. The adaption of these newcomers is important in cross-cultural research. In the study "Cross-Cultural Adaptation of International College Student in the United States" by Yikang Wang, the goal was to examine how the psychological and socio-cultural adaption of international college students varied over time. The survey contained a sample of 169 international students attending a coeducational public university. The two subtypes of adaption: psychological and socio-cultural were examined. Psychological adaption refers to "feelings of well-being or satisfaction during cross-cultural transitions;" while socio-cultural refers to the ability to fit into the new culture. The results show both graduate and undergraduate students showed both the satisfactory and socio-cultural skilled changed over time. Psychological adaption had the most significant change for a student who has resided in the US for at least 24 months while socio-cultural adaption steadily increased over time. It can be concluded that eventually over time, the minority group will shed some of their culture's characteristic when in a new country and incorporate new culture qualities. Also, it was confirmed that the more time spent in a new country would result in becoming more accustomed to the dominate countries aspects of characteristics. Figure 2 demonstrates as the length of time resided in the United States increase—the dominant country, the life satisfaction and socio-cultural skill increase as well—positive correlation. In turn, research by Caligiuri's group, published in 2020, shows that one semester of classroom experiential activities designed to foster international and domestic student social interaction serve to foster international students’ ''sense of belonging and social support''. In a study by Viola Angelini, "Life Satisfaction of Immigrant: Does cultural assimilation matter?", the theory of assimilation as having benefits for well-being. The goal of this study was to assess the difference between cultural assimilation and the subjective well-being of immigrants. The journal included a study that examined a "direct measure of assimilation with a host culture and immigrants' subjective well-being." Using data from the German Socio-Economic Panel, it was concluded that there was a positive correlation between cultural assimilation and an immigrant's life's satisfaction/wellbeing even after discarding factors such as employment status, wages, etc. "Life Satisfaction of Immigrant: Does cultural assimilation matter?" also confirms "association with life satisfaction is stronger for established immigrants than for recent ones." It was found that the more immigrants that identified with the German culture and who spoke the fluent national language—dominant country language, the more they reported to be satisfied with their lives. Life satisfaction rates were higher for those who had assimilated to the dominant country than those who had not assimilated since those who did incorporate the dominant language, religion, psychological aspects, etc.


Willingness to assimilate and cultural shock

In the study "Examination of cultural shock, intercultural sensitivity and willingness to adopt" by Clare D’Souza, the study uses a diary method to analyze the data collected. The study involved students undergoing a study abroad tour. The results show negative intercultural sensitivity is much greater in participants who experience "culture shock." Those who experience culture shock have emotional expression and responses of hostility, anger, negativity, anxiety frustration, isolation, and regression. Also, for one who has traveled to the country before permanently moving, they would have predetermined beliefs about the culture and their status within the country. The emotional expression for this individual includes excitement, happiness, eagerness, and euphoria. Another article titled "International Students from Melbourne Describing Their Cross-Cultural Transitions Experiences: Culture Shock, Social Interaction, and Friendship Development" by Nish Belford focuses on cultural shock. Belford interviewed international students to explore their experience after living and studying in
Melbourne Melbourne ( ; Boonwurrung language, Boonwurrung/Woiwurrung–Taungurung language, Woiwurrung: ''Narrm'' or ''Naarm'') is the List of Australian capital cities, capital and List of cities in Australia by population, most populous city of the St ...
, Australia. The data collected were narratives from the students that focused on variables such as "cultural similarity, intercultural communication competence, intercultural friendship, and relational identity to influence their experiences."


United States

Between 1880 and 1920, the United States took in roughly 24 million
immigrants Immigration is the international movement of people to a destination country of which they are not natives or where they do not possess citizenship in order to settle as Permanent residency, permanent residents or Naturalization, naturalize ...
. This increase in immigration can be attributed to many historical changes. The beginning of the 21st century has also marked a massive era of immigration, and sociologists are once again trying to make sense of the impacts that immigration has on society and on the immigrants themselves. Assimilation had various meanings in American sociology. Henry Pratt Fairchild associates American assimilation with Americanization or the "
melting pot The melting pot is a Monoculturalism, monocultural metaphor for a wiktionary:heterogeneous, heterogeneous society becoming more wiktionary:homogeneous, homogeneous, the different elements "melting together" with a common culture; an alternativ ...
" theory. Some scholars also believed that assimilation and acculturation were synonymous. According to a common point of view, assimilation is a "process of interpretation and fusion" from another group or person. That may include memories, behaviors, and sentiments. By sharing their experiences and histories, they blend into the common cultural life. A related theory is structural pluralism proposed by American sociologist Milton Gordon. It describes the American situation wherein despite the cultural assimilation of ethnic groups to mainstream American society, they maintained structural separation. Gordon maintained that there is limited integration of the immigrants into American social institutions such as educational, occupational, political, and social cliques. During The Colonial Period from 1607 to 1776, individuals immigrated to the British colonies on two very different paths—voluntary and forced migration. Those who migrated to the colonies on their own volition were drawn by the allure of cheap land, high wages, and the freedom of conscience in British North America. On the latter half, the largest population of forced migrants to the colonies was African slaves. Slavery was different from the other forced migrations as, unlike in the case of convicts, there was no possibility of earning freedom, although some slaves were manumitted in the centuries before the American Civil War. The long history of immigration in the established gateways means that the place of immigrants in terms of class, racial, and
ethnic An ethnic group or an ethnicity is a grouping of people who identity (social science), identify with each other on the basis of shared attributes that distinguish them from other groups. Those attributes can include common sets of traditions, an ...
hierarchies in the traditional gateways is more structured or established, but on the other hand, the new gateways do not have much immigration
history History (derived ) is the systematic study and the documentation of the human activity. The time period of event before the invention of writing systems is considered prehistory. "History" is an umbrella term comprising past events as we ...
and so the place of immigrants in terms of class, racial, and ethnic hierarchies are less defined, and immigrants may have more influence to define their position. Secondly, the size of the new gateways may influence immigrant assimilation. Having a smaller gateway may influence the level of
racial segregation Racial segregation is the systematic separation of people into race (human classification), racial or other Ethnicity, ethnic groups in daily life. Racial segregation can amount to the international crime of apartheid and a crimes against hum ...
among immigrants and native-born people. Thirdly, the difference in institutional arrangements may influence immigrant assimilation. Traditional gateways, unlike new gateways, have many institutions set up to help immigrants such as legal aid, bureaus, social organizations. Finally, Waters and Jimenez have only speculated that those differences may influence immigrant assimilation and the way researchers that should assess immigrant assimilation.


Canada

Canada's multicultural history dates back to the period
European colonization The historical phenomenon of colonization is one that stretches around the globe and across time. Ancient and medieval colonialism was practiced by the Phoenicians, the Greeks, the Turkish people, Turks, and the Arabs. Colonialism in the mode ...
from the 16th to 19th centuries, with waves of ethnic European
emigration Emigration is the act of leaving a resident country or place of residence with the intent to settle elsewhere (to permanently leave a country). Conversely, immigration describes the movement of people into one country from another (to permanentl ...
to the region. In the 20th century, Indian,
Chinese Chinese can refer to: * Something related to China China, officially the People's Republic of China (PRC), is a country in East Asia. It is the world's List of countries and dependencies by population, most populous country, with a Popul ...
and
Japanese-Canadians are Canadian citizens of Japanese Japanese may refer to: * Something from or related to Japan Japan ( ja, 日本, or , and formally , ''Nihonkoku'') is an island country in East Asia. It is situated in the northwest Pacific Ocean, ...
were the largest immigrant group.


1900s–present: Integration

Canada remains one of the largest immigrant populations in the world. The 2016 census recorded 7.5 million documented immigrants, representing a fifth of the country's total population. Focus has shifted from a rhetoric of cultural assimilation to cultural integration. In contrast to assimilation, integration aims to preserve the roots of a minority society while still allowing for smooth coexistence with the dominant culture. Furthermore, the advancement and integration of immigrants into the United States has accounted for 29% of U.S. population growth since 2000. Recent arrival of immigrants to the United States has been examined closely over the last two decades. The results show the driving factors for immigration including citizenship, homeownership, English language proficiency, job status, and earning a better income.


See also

*
Acculturation Acculturation is a process of social, psychological, and cultural change that stems from the balancing of two cultures while adapting to the prevailing culture of the society. Acculturation is a process in which an individual adopts, acquires and ...
*
Code-switching In linguistics Linguistics is the scientific study of human language. It is called a scientific study because it entails a comprehensive, systematic, objective, and precise analysis of all aspects of language, particularly its nature and ...
*
Conformity Conformity is the act of matching attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors to social group, group Norm (social), norms, politics or being like-minded. Norms are implicit, specific rules, shared by a group of individuals, that guide their interactions wi ...
* Cultural agility * Cultural amalgamation *
Cultural appropriation Cultural appropriation is the inappropriate or unacknowledged adoption of an element or elements of one culture or cultural identity, identity by members of another culture or identity. This can be controversial when members of a dominant cultur ...
*
Cultural genocide Cultural genocide or cultural cleansing is a concept which was proposed by lawyer Raphael Lemkin in 1944 as a component of genocide. Though the precise definition of ''cultural genocide'' remains contested, the Tsitsernakaberd, Armenian Genocide ...
*
Cultural imperialism Cultural imperialism (sometimes referred to as cultural colonialism) comprises the culture, cultural dimensions of imperialism. The word "imperialism" often describes practices in which a social entity engages culture (including language, tradi ...
*
Diaspora politics Diaspora politics is the political behavior of transnational ethnic An ethnic group or an ethnicity is a grouping of people who identity (social science), identify with each other on the basis of shared attributes that distinguish them from ...
*
Enculturation Enculturation is the process by which people learn the dynamics of their surrounding culture and acquire values and norms appropriate or necessary to that culture and its worldviews.Grusec, Joan E.; Hastings, Paul D. ''Handbook of Socialization: ...
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Ethnic interest group An ethnic interest group or ethnic lobby, according to Thomas Ambrosio, is an advocacy group Advocacy groups, also known as interest groups, special interest groups, lobbying groups or pressure groups use various forms of advocacy in order ...
* Ethnic relations *
Ethnocide Ethnocide is the cultural genocide, extermination of cultures. Reviewing the legal and the academic history of the usage of the terms genocide and ethnocide, Bartolomé Clavero differentiates them by stating that "Genocide kills people while ethn ...
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Forced assimilation Forced assimilation is an involuntary process of cultural assimilation of religious or ethnic minority groups during which they are forced to adopt language, Identity (social science), identity, Social norm, norms, mores, Convention (norm), custom ...
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Forced conversion Forced conversion is the adoption of a different religion or the adoption of irreligion under Coercion, duress. Someone who has been forced to convert to a different religion or irreligion may continue, covertly, to adhere to the beliefs and pract ...
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Globalization Globalization, or globalisation ( Commonwealth English; see spelling differences), is the process of interaction and integration among people, companies, and governments worldwide. The term ''globalization'' first appeared in the early 2 ...
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Hegemony Hegemony (, , ) is the political, economic, and military predominance of one state over other states. In Ancient Greece Ancient Greece ( el, Ἑλλάς, Hellás) was a northeastern Mediterranean Sea, Mediterranean civilization, existing ...
* Immigrant-host model *
Immigration and crime Immigration and crime refers to the relationship between criminal activity and immigrant communities. Research suggests that people tend to overestimate the relationship between immigration and criminality, and that the media tends to erroneously d ...
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Indigenization Indigenization is the act of making something more native; transformation of some service, idea, etc. to suit a local culture, especially through the use of more indigenous peoples, indigenous people in public administration, employment and other ...
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Intercultural communication Intercultural communication is a discipline that studies communication across different cultures and social groups, or how culture affects communication. It describes the wide range of communication processes and problems that naturally appear w ...
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Intercultural competence Cultural competence, also known as intercultural competence, is a range of cognitive, affective, and behavioural skills that lead to effective and appropriate communication with people of other cultures.Deardorff, D. K. (2009). ''The Sage handbook ...
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Language death In linguistics, language death occurs when a language loses its terminal speaker, last First language, native speaker. By extension, language extinction is when the language is no longer known, including by Second language, second-language speaker ...
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Language shift Language shift, also known as language transfer or language replacement or language assimilation, is the process whereby a speech community shifts to a different language, usually over an extended period of time. Often, languages that are perceiv ...
* Leitkultur *
Nationalism Nationalism is an idea and movement that holds that the nation should be congruent with the State (polity), state. As a movement, nationalism tends to promote the interests of a particular nation (as in a in-group and out-group, group of peo ...
* Parallel society *
Patriotism Patriotism is the feeling of love, devotion, and sense of attachment to one's country. This attachment can be a combination of many different feelings, language relating to one's own homeland, including ethnic, cultural, political or histor ...
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Political correctness ''Political correctness'' (adjectivally: ''politically correct''; commonly abbreviated ''PC'') is a term used to describe language, policies, or measures that are intended to avoid offense or disadvantage to members of particular groups in socie ...
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Racial integration Racial integration, or simply integration, includes desegregation (the process of ending systematic racial segregation). In addition to desegregation, integration includes goals such as leveling barriers to association, creating equal opportunity ...
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Racial segregation Racial segregation is the systematic separation of people into race (human classification), racial or other Ethnicity, ethnic groups in daily life. Racial segregation can amount to the international crime of apartheid and a crimes against hum ...
* Recuperation (politics) *
Religious assimilation Religious assimilation refers to the adoption of a majority or dominant culture's Religion, religious practices and Belief, beliefs by a minority or subordinate culture. It is an important form of cultural assimilation.assimilation on its own lite ...
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Respectability politics Respectability politics or the politics of respectability is a form of moralistic discourse used by some prominent figures, leaders or academics who are members of various marginalized groups to consciously set aside and undermine cultural and mor ...
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Social integration Social integration is the process during which newcomers or minorities are incorporated into the social structure of the host society. Social integration, together with economic integration and identity integration, are three main dimensions ...
* Sociology of race and ethnic relations *
Sovietization Sovietization (russian: Советизация) is the adoption of a political system based on the model of Soviet (council), soviets (workers' councils) or the adoption of a way of life, mentality, and culture modelled after the Soviet Union. Th ...
Culture-specific: *
Americanization (of Native Americans) The cultural assimilation of Native Americans refers to a series of efforts by the United States to assimilate Indigenous peoples of the Americas, Native Americans into mainstream European Americans, European–American culture between the years ...
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Anglicisation Anglicisation is a form of cultural assimilation whereby something non-English becomes assimilated into, influenced by or dominated by Culture of England, Englishness or Culture of the United Kingdom, Britishness. It can be socio-cultural, wher ...
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Arabization Arabization or Arabisation ( ar, تعريب, ') describes both the process of growing Arabs, Arab influence on non-Arab populations, causing a language shift by the latter's gradual adoption of the Arabic, Arabic language and incorporation of Ar ...
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Stolen Generations The Stolen Generations (also known as Stolen Children) were the children of Aboriginal Australians, Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders, Torres Strait Islander descent who were removed from their families by the Australian Gover ...
(of Australian Aborigines) *
Christianization Christianization ( or Christianisation) is to make Christian; to imbue with Christian principles; to become Christian. It can apply to the conversion of an individual, a practice, a place or a whole society. It began in the Roman Empire ...
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Francization Francization (in American English, Canadian English, and Oxford English) or Francisation (in other British English), Frenchification, or Gallicization is the expansion of French language use—either through willful adoption or coercion—by more ...
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Germanization Germanisation, or Germanization, is the spread of the German language, German people, people and German culture, culture. It was a central idea of German conservative thought in the 19th and the 20th centuries, when conservatism and ethnic nationa ...
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Hispanicization Hispanicization ( es, hispanización) refers to the process by which a place or person becomes influenced by Hispanic culture The term ''Hispanic'' ( es, hispano) refers to people, cultures Culture () is an umbrella term which encompass ...
* "
More Irish than the Irish themselves "More Irish than the Irish themselves" ( ga, Níos Gaelaí ná na Gaeil féin, la, Hiberniores Hibernis ipsis) is a phrase used in Irish historiography to describe a phenomenon of cultural assimilation Cultural assimilation is the process in ...
" * Indianisation *
Islamification Islamization, Islamicization, or Islamification ( ar, أسلمة, translit=aslamāh), refers to the process through which a society shifts towards the religion of Islam and becomes largely Muslims, Muslim. Societal Islamization has historicall ...
* Javanisation *
Jewish assimilation Jewish assimilation ( he, התבוללות, ''hitbolelut'') refers either to the gradual cultural assimilation and social integration of Jews in their surrounding culture or to an ideological program in the age of emancipation promoting conform ...
* Lithuanization *
Malayisation Malayisation ( Commonwealth spelling) or Malayization (North American North America is a continent in the Northern Hemisphere and almost entirely within the Western Hemisphere. It is bordered to the north by the Arctic Ocean, to the ...
* Norwegianization *
Russification Russification (russian: русификация, rusifikatsiya), or Russianization, is a form of cultural assimilation Cultural assimilation is the process in which a minority group or culture comes to resemble a society's Dominant culture, ma ...
* Romanianization *
Sanskritisation Sanskritisation (or Sanskritization) is a term in sociology which refers to the process by which castes or tribes placed lower in the caste hierarchy seek 'upward' mobility by emulating the rituals and practices of the dominant castes or upper ...
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Serbianisation Serbianisation American and British English spelling differences#-ise, -ize (-isation, -ization), or Serbianization, also known as Serbification, and Serbisation American and British English spelling differences#-ise, -ize (-isation, -ization), or ...
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Sinicization Sinicization, sinofication, sinification, or sinonization (from the prefix , 'Chinese, relating to China') is the process by which non-Chinese societies come under the influence of Chinese culture, particularly the language, societal norms, cul ...
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Slavicisation Slavicisation American and British English spelling differences#-ise, -ize (-isation, -ization), or Slavicization, is the acculturation of something Slavic into a non-Slavic culture, cuisine, region, or nation. To a lesser degree, it also means a ...
* Swedification *
Ukrainization Ukrainization (also spelled Ukrainisation), sometimes referred to as Ukrainianization (or Ukrainianisation) is a policy or practice of increasing the usage and facilitating the development of the Ukrainian language and promoting other elements of ...
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Thaification Thaification, or Thai-ization, is the process by which people of different cultural and ethnic origins living in Thailand become cultural assimilation, assimilated to the dominant culture of Thailand, that of central Thailand. Thaification was ...
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Turkification Turkification, Turkization, or Turkicization ( tr, Türkleştirme) describes a shift whereby populations or places received or adopted Turkic people, Turkic attributes such as culture, language, history, or ethnicity. However, often this term is ...


References


Bibliography

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External links


Asian-Nation: Asian American Assimilation & Ethnic Identity



Unity and Diversity in Multicultural Societies
{{DEFAULTSORT:Cultural Assimilation Assimilation Assimilation Ethnicity in politics Majority–minority relations