Encyclopedia of Immigrant Health

2012 Edition
| Editors: Sana Loue, Martha Sajatovic

Ambiguous Loss

  • Jaina Amin
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4419-5659-0_35

In a world where immigration and migration are prominent, cultural diversity becomes essential. The United States is known as a cultural “melting pot.” Thus, in looking at the cultural diversity each ethnic group brings, there also is an element of cultural ambiguity for the displaced ethnic group. Cultural ambiguity is defined as an unclear culture, or of mixed uncertain cultures. As of 2010, the US Census had 310,233,000 total people living in the US, made up of American Indians, Alaskan Natives, Asians, Blacks, Hispanics, Native Hawaiians, other Pacific Islanders, and Whites. And amongst each of these limited groups are numerous subgroups of individuals that struggle to maintain their ethnic heritage.

Ethnic groups struggle with loss of their native languages, traditions, and traditional roles. For example, Scourby discussed the plight of first, second, and third generation Greeks. Questionnaires were sent out with questions measuring the rate of assimilation. One of the questions...

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Suggested Readings

  1. Scourby, A. (1992). Mobility and ethnicity: The case of Greek-Americans. In M. D’Innocenzo & J. P. Sirefman (Eds.), Immigration and ethnicity: American society “melting pot” or “salad bowl” (pp. 49–59). Westport, CT: Greenwood.Google Scholar

Suggested Resources

  1. Boundary ambiguity – cultural differences in the experience of boundary ambiguity. Retrieved March 7, 2010, from http://family.jrank.org/pages/169/Boundary-Ambiguity-Cultural-Differences-in-Experience-Boundary-Ambiguity.html#ixzz0iIv5PIxE
  2. Cultural diversity. (2010, February 21). In Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Retrieved March 14, 2010, from http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Cultural_diversity&oldid=345361055
  3. UNESCO. (2005). Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions. Paris: Author. Retrieved from http://unesdoc.unesco.org/images/0014/001429/142919e.pdf.
  4. U.S. Population Projections. (2008). Projections of the population by sex, race, and Hispanic origin for the United States: 2010 to 2050. Retrieved March 1, 2010 from U.S. Census Bureau website: http://www.census.gov

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jaina Amin
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of PsychiatryUniversity Hospitals Case Medical CenterClevelandUSA