Third-Culture Kids/Global Nomads

Third-culture kids (TCKs) and global nomads (GNs) are people who have been raised internationally because of a parent’s occupation. Researchers and practitioners have described this population as everything from “rootless” and “culturally confused,” on the one hand, to “prototype citizens of the twenty-first century,” on the other. The truth is probably somewhere in between. Certainly TCKs and GNs are a direct product of the multicultural societies and globalized world in which we now live. As such, they may exemplify much of what is discussed in this encyclopedia.

This entry reviews key terminology, deconstructs the classic definition of a TCK/GN, and discusses the general benefits and challenges of the TCK/GN experience.


Children have been raised internationally because of a parent’s occupation since the first traders traveled the first ...

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