Acculturative Stress

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  • Stress caused by psychological, somatic, and social difficulties when adapting to a new cultural context. The term acculturative stress has been used synonymously with culture shock and psychic conflict (the conflict people experience when coping with con flicting cultural norms). Acculturative stress is consid ered a crucial psychological variable affecting an individual's affective and cognitive well-being. Whether or not acculturation is experienced as stressful depends on affluence, social support, and the degree of dissimi larity of the cultural contexts, among other factors. Most often, acculturative stress has been investigated in first-and second-generation minority immigrants, who gener ally report lower levels of affective and cognitive well-being than nonimmigrants. For more information, see Sam (2006).

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