It's not easy being green: stress and invalidation in identity formation of culturally-complex or mixed-race individuals

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Title: It's not easy being green: stress and invalidation in identity formation of culturally-complex or mixed-race individuals
Author: Roberts Perez, Samaria Dalia
Abstract: This is an exploratory study to examine a population which has not been widely researched , mixed -race or "culturally -complex" individuals and identification . In the interest of this study , "culturally -complex" refers to individuals who report parents being from two or more different races /ethnicities ; i .e . Black , White , Latino /Hispanic , Asian , Native -American , etc . Current literature reveals through quantitative methods that mixed -race adolescents often report more stress and are at greater health risks than most mono -racial adolescents . However , past studies have not thoroughly investigated why and how this stress exists and at times is inconsistent , which points to the need for qualitative inquiry . Although most of the previous literature focuses on mixed -race adolescents , this study focused on an adult population . Study participants were recruited through snowball sampling for in -depth , open -ended interviews . The data was analyzed by searching for common themes that illustrate the possible causes for stress in culturally -complex individuals . Though this study cannot be representational of all culturally -complex individuals it did provide for noteworthy findings . Race and ethnicity , and particularly being culturally -complex are topics that are often not spoken about in the family or between siblings . In general , culturally -complex individuals are not provided with space for dialogue and so thus , having a place to voice ideas , experiences , and opinions was appreciated by all participants . In all interviews , frustration and confusion was expressed towards box -checking . Though stress and invalidation was inconsistent in past literature surrounding mixed -race and culturally -complex individuals , only some participants in this study reported stress and invalidation , while other participants did not report having ever experienced stress or invalidation . While literature had posed that often culturally -complex individuals would identify with the ethnicity of the father , in this study most of those who identified as one culture over another had identified as the ethnicity of the mother . Participants additionally had ?hierarchies of identities ? where being culturally -complex was not always their most important role . Future research should examine populations from different socioeconomic groups and other demographics .
URI: http : / /hdl .handle .net /1969 .1 /ETD -TAMU -2834
Date: 2009-05-15

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It's not easy being green: stress and invalidation in identity formation of culturally-complex or mixed-race individuals. Available electronically from http : / /hdl .handle .net /1969 .1 /ETD -TAMU -2834 .

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