Cultural identity in bicultural young adults in Ireland: a social representation theory approach
This research investigates the nature by which first- and second-generation Irish young adults of (1) African descent, (2) Asian descent, and (3) Eastern European descent explore their cultural identity(ies) through communicating and interpreting social representations relating to their ethnic and national cultures. Using Social Representation Theory (SRT) and, more widely, Proculturation Theory as the theoretical underpinning, we examine how grown children of migrants construct their cultural identity(ies) by exploring external social representations. We conducted three separate in-depth focus groups for each continental group in virtual rooms on Zoom, lasting between 60 and 90 mins. A thematic analysis was pursued to understand how the participants discussed the representation of their cultural groups both in social and media-driven situations. The results indicated the overarching themes of Anchoring Irishness and Latent Media Representation, whereby participants communicated and dialogically explored their subjective interpretations of the social representations of their cultural groups which, in turn, may have informed their cultural identity(ies). Highlighting the dynamic nature of the cultural reality of Ireland and how it impacts generations after the initial migration period, this research highlights and exemplifies the importance of external social representations that serve to construct the multiple cultural identities of first- and second-generation migrants.
PublicationSocial Sciences, 2022, 11,(6), 230
Other Funding informationThis work was supported by the Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences in the University of Limerick, under the Sanctuary PhD Fellowship
Sustainable development goals
- (3) Good Health and Well-being
Department or School
- School of Modern Languages and Applied Linguistics