Growing up to belong transnationally : parent perceptions on identity formation among Latvian emigrant children in England

Kamerāde, D ORCID: and Skubiņa, I 2019, 'Growing up to belong transnationally : parent perceptions on identity formation among Latvian emigrant children in England' , in: The Emigrant Communities of Latvia: National Identity, Transnational Belonging, and Diaspora Politics , IMISCOE Research Series , Springer, pp. 138-155.

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As a result of the wide availability of social media, cheap flights and free intra-EU movement it has become considerably easier to maintain links with the country of origin than it was only a generation ago. Therefore, the language and identity formation among children of recent migrants might be significantly different from the experiences of children of the previous generations. The aim of this paper is to examine the perceptions of parents on the formation of national and transnational identity among the ‘1.5 generation migrant children’ – the children born in Latvia but growing up in England and the factors affecting them. In particular, this article seeks to understand whether 1.5 generation migrant children from Latvia construct strong transnational identities by maintaining equally strong ties with their country of origin and mother tongue and, at the same time, intensively creating networks, learning and using the language of the new home country. The results of 16 semi-structured in-depth interviews with the parents of these children reveal that the 1.5 generation Latvian migrants are on a path of becoming English-dominant bilinguals. So far there is little evidence of the development of a strong transnational identity among 1.5 generation migrant children from Latvia. Instead, this study observed a tendency towards an active integration and assimilation into the new host country facilitated by their parents or occurring despite their parents’ efforts to maintain ties with Latvia. These findings suggest that rather than the national identity of the country of origin being supplemented with a new additional national identity – that of the country of settlement – the identity of the country of origin becomes dominated by it instead.

Item Type: Book Section
Editors: Kaša, R and Mieriņa, I
Schools: Schools > School of Health and Society
Publisher: Springer
Series Name: IMISCOE Research Series
ISBN: 9783030120917 (print); 9783030120924 (online)
ISSN: 2364-4087
Related URLs:
Funders: European Social Fund
Depositing User: Dr D Kamerāde
Date Deposited: 16 Jan 2019 14:27
Last Modified: 16 Feb 2022 00:33

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