The role of identity in acculturation among immigrant people: Theoretical propositions, empirical questions, and applied recommendations

Seth J. Schwartz, Marilyn J. Montgomery, Ervin Briones

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

224 Scopus citations


The present paper advances theoretical propositions regarding the relationship between acculturation and identity. The most central thesis argued is that acculturation represents changes in cultural identity and that personal identity has the potential to 'anchor' immigrant people during their transition to a new society. The article emphasizes the experiences of nonwhite, non-Western immigrant people moving to Western nations. The article also calls for research on heretofore unexplored aspects of the relationship of acculturation to personal and social identity. Ideas are proposed for interventions to promote cultural identity change and personal identity coherence.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-30
Number of pages30
JournalHuman Development
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 1 2006



  • Acculturation
  • Cultural identity
  • Immigrant
  • Personal identity
  • Social identity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychology(all)
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology

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