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1.5-generation immigrant adolescents’ autonomy negotiations in transnational family contexts

Elina Turjanmaa, Anne Alitolppa-Niitamo, Inga Jasinskaja-Lahti

Abstract

This study explored how 1.5-generation immigrant adolescents negotiate their autonomy with their parents in a new cultural context. The studied adolescents are immigrants with African, Middle Eastern, Southern Asian, and EU/FSU background in Finland. The study is built on the ecological framework, which looks at development within the context of social systems. The study combines perspectives of cross-cultural psychology, acculturation research, and developmental psychology to explore autonomy in a transnational developmental context. The data consists of 80 semi-structured interviews with immigrant adolescents aged 13 to 18. Our results suggest that adolescents’ autonomy is negotiated within local family circumstances, while the transnational context becomes particularly crucial in the negotiation categories of peer relations and cultural continuity. Cultural differences in using different negotiation categories are discussed.

Keywords

immigrant adolescents; transnational adolescents; 1.5 generation; intergenerational relations; autonomy

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