Identificational Assimilation of Japanese Americans: A Reassessment of Primordialism and Circumstantialism
Two contradictory models of ethnic identity — primordialism & circumstantialism — are tested, drawing on data obtained via mail questionnaire & interviews from 40 Japanese Americans & their adult children (N = 106) in Portland, Ore. Focus is on whether the third generation of Japanese Americans retains ethnic identity or has achieved complete assimilation, & factors that impact assimilation. Analysis demonstrates attenuation of ethnic identity between successive generations. However, the seemingly different ethnic identity of the second & third generations does not necessarily evidence the significance of generation in identificational assimilation. Childhood & adult social networks have the greatest effect on ethnic identity. In addition, generational shift does not lead to assimilation if & when successive generations are placed in the same circumstances. 3 Tables, 1 Figure, 1 Appendix, 38 References. Adapted from the source document.