Date of Award

5-2018

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

College/School

College of Education and Human Services

Department/Program

Family and Child Studies

Thesis Sponsor/Dissertation Chair/Project Chair

Pearl Stewart

Committee Member

Katia Goldfarb

Committee Member

Olena Nesteruk

Subject(s)

East Indian American women, Children of immigrants, Acculturation,

Abstract

Guided by the principles of grounded theory, this qualitative study aimed to explore the Asian Indian immigrant women’s experiences in maintaining and promoting the Indian cultural values for themselves and their children, living in the United States. Components of acculturation theory were also utilized as a lens to interpret the data. Thirteen first generation Asian Indian mothers were recruited through a combination of snowball and theoretical sampling techniques. In-depth semi-structured interviews were conducted with each participant. Four themes emerged from the data analysis: (a) Maintaining core Indian values in daily life, (b) Maintaining transnational connections, (c) Preference for Indian enclaves, and (d) More “Indian” here than in homeland. The findings suggest that Asian Indian immigrant women made conscious efforts to maintain their “Indianness” and raised their children with Indian values. Residing in Indian enclaves, celebration of Indian festivals, and participation in one’s religious activities were some of the means of recreating “Indian” culture on a foreign land. The findings also suggest that the participants continued to maintain strong relational ties with the family members in India. The role of information and communications technology (ICTs) emerged as pivotal in helping the immigrants and their families to stay connected. Implications of the study and future directions were discussed.

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