Cultural transitioning of Jewish immigrants: Education, employment and integration

  • Ada Sinacore
  • Anne-Marie Mikhail
  • Anusha Kassan
  • Alexandra Lerner
Article

Abstract

This paper discusses the cultural transitioning process that immigrants undergo in order to attain educational, occupational, and social integration within Canadian society. Results of this phenomenological study examining 31 Jewish immigrants from Argentina, Israel, France and the Former Soviet Union, reveal that lack of educational equivalency and lack of recognition of foreign work experience, language barriers, discrimination, insider/outsider sentiments and the structure of the community were common impediments to cultural transitioning. However, findings suggest that despite a common religious identity, immigrants’ ethnic identities and expectations lead to divergent cultural transitioning experiences.

Keywords

Immigrants Cultural transition Integration 

Résumé. Transition culturelle d’immigrés juifs: scolarité, emploi et intégration.

Cet article discute le processus de transition culturelle dans lequel des immigrés s’engagent afin d’atteindre à l’intégration scolaire, professionnelle et sociale dans la société canadienne. Les résultats de cette étude phénoménologique portant sur 31 immigrés juifs d’Argentine, d’Israël, de France et de l’ex-Union soviétique indiquent que le manque d’équivalence scolaire et le manque de reconnaissance de l’expérience professionnelle étrangère, les barrières linguistiques, la discrimination, les sentiments d’être autochtone/allochtone et la structure de la communauté sont des obstacles.

Zusammenfassung. Kultureller Übergang bei jüdischen Einwanderern: Bildung, Beschäftigung und Integration.

Dieser Artikel untersucht den kulturellen Transitionsprozess, den Einwanderer nach Kanada durchlaufen, um die Integration in Bildung, Beschäftigung und Gesellschaft zu erreichen. Die Ergebnisse dieser Studie, die 31 jüdische Einwanderer aus Argentinien, Israel, Frankreich und der ehemaligen Sowjetunion untersuchte, zeigen als übliche Hemmnisse der kulturellen Transition den Mangel an gleichwertiger Bildung, die fehlende Anerkennung der im Ausland erworbenen Berufserfahrungen, Sprachbarrieren, Diskriminierung, Insider–Outsider-Vorurteile sowie die Struktur der Wohnortgemeinde. Allerdings lassen die Ergebnisse vermuten, dass sich trotz einer gemeinsamen religiösen Identität insbesondere die ethnische Identität der Einwanderer sowie deren Erwartungen zu sehr unterschiedlichen Transitions-Erfahrungen führen.

Resumen. Transición Cultural de Inmigrantes Judíos: Educación, Empleo e Integración.

Este artículo aborda el proceso de transición cultural por el que pasan los inmigrantes para alcanzar la integración educativa, ocupacional y social en la sociedad canadiense. Se llevó a cabo un estudio fenomenológico con 31 inmigrantes judíos procedentes de Argentina, Israel, Francia y la antigua Unión Soviética. Los resultados revelan que la falta de equivalencia en las cualificaciones académicas (educativas) y de reconocimiento de la experiencia laboral foránea, las barreras idiomáticas, la discriminación, los sentimientos autóctono/extranjero y la estructura de la comunidad eran impedimentos frecuentes en la transición cultural. Sin embargo, los resultados sugieren que a pesar de tener una identidad religiosa común, las identidades étnicas de los inmigrantes y sus expectativas daban lugar a experiencias de transición cultural divergentes.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ada Sinacore
    • 1
  • Anne-Marie Mikhail
    • 1
  • Anusha Kassan
    • 1
  • Alexandra Lerner
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Educational and Counselling PsychologyMcGill UniversityMontrealCanada

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