Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Christmas keeps migrants linked to family and culture

21.12.2006
Christmas is often a time for families to get together and celebrate the holiday season and now new research funded by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) discovers how migrant families are able to bridge international divides to celebrate Christmas with their loved ones.

Dr Tracey Reynolds and Dr Elisabetta Zontini, of the ESRC’s Families and Social Capital research group have highlighted how Caribbean and Italian families use Christmas to reinforce cultural and family ties both at home and with family members thousands of miles away.

Historically, families have often faced long and frequently expensive journeys back ‘home’ to see parents and relatives but traditions are changing. As second and third generation migrants have established their own families in Britain, the most common way to keep in touch and celebrate the holiday season is with phone calls and emails on Christmas day or spent at home in Britain with relatives visiting them.

For those families who do chose to make a trip back ‘home’ to the Caribbean for Christmas it often coincides with a ‘family reunion’, an event organised every two to three years which brings family members spread across the world together for the holidays. Michael, a 22 year old second generation Jamaican living in England comments; “It’s a family tradition that we meet up at my parent’s house in Kingston (Jamaica) on Christmas Eve. Usually my uncle from Germany is there as well. Last Christmas, my aunt from New Zealand came. Some of my Dad’s aunties from the States were there, and three of his cousins and their kids, they all live in Canada. It keeps us emotionally close’.

Dr Reynolds explains that, “For Caribbean and Italian families, Christmas marks an intense period of ‘transnational connections’ among members in different parts of the world”.

To maintain and strengthen family ties, Caribbean families often send money back ‘home’ to parents, grandparents and less affluent relations; it is an important way of caring for their family living far away. Amongst Italian families, in contrast, the exchange of small gifts or traditional ethic foods between relations in Britain and Italy is one of the key mechanisms for keeping ties alive.

Dr Reynolds said: “Our research shows that for Caribbean and Italian migrants, and their offspring living in Britain, the value of Christmas and the transnational caring networks associated with it, strengthens family ties and reinforces ethnic identity and cultural belonging.”

Annika Howard | alfa
Further information:
http://www.esrc.ac.uk

More articles from Social Sciences:

nachricht New measure for the wellbeing of populations could replace Human Development Index
07.11.2018 | International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA)

nachricht Because not only arguments count
30.10.2018 | Max-Planck-Institut für Mathematik in den Naturwissenschaften (MPIMIS)

All articles from Social Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Data use draining your battery? Tiny device to speed up memory while also saving power

The more objects we make "smart," from watches to entire buildings, the greater the need for these devices to store and retrieve massive amounts of data quickly without consuming too much power.

Millions of new memory cells could be part of a computer chip and provide that speed and energy savings, thanks to the discovery of a previously unobserved...

Im Focus: An energy-efficient way to stay warm: Sew high-tech heating patches to your clothes

Personal patches could reduce energy waste in buildings, Rutgers-led study says

What if, instead of turning up the thermostat, you could warm up with high-tech, flexible patches sewn into your clothes - while significantly reducing your...

Im Focus: Lethal combination: Drug cocktail turns off the juice to cancer cells

A widely used diabetes medication combined with an antihypertensive drug specifically inhibits tumor growth – this was discovered by researchers from the University of Basel’s Biozentrum two years ago. In a follow-up study, recently published in “Cell Reports”, the scientists report that this drug cocktail induces cancer cell death by switching off their energy supply.

The widely used anti-diabetes drug metformin not only reduces blood sugar but also has an anti-cancer effect. However, the metformin dose commonly used in the...

Im Focus: New Foldable Drone Flies through Narrow Holes in Rescue Missions

A research team from the University of Zurich has developed a new drone that can retract its propeller arms in flight and make itself small to fit through narrow gaps and holes. This is particularly useful when searching for victims of natural disasters.

Inspecting a damaged building after an earthquake or during a fire is exactly the kind of job that human rescuers would like drones to do for them. A flying...

Im Focus: Topological material switched off and on for the first time

Key advance for future topological transistors

Over the last decade, there has been much excitement about the discovery, recognised by the Nobel Prize in Physics only two years ago, that there are two types...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

ICTM Conference 2019: Digitization emerges as an engineering trend for turbomachinery construction

12.12.2018 | Event News

New Plastics Economy Investor Forum - Meeting Point for Innovations

10.12.2018 | Event News

EGU 2019 meeting: Media registration now open

06.12.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Data use draining your battery? Tiny device to speed up memory while also saving power

14.12.2018 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Tangled magnetic fields power cosmic particle accelerators

14.12.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

In search of missing worlds, Hubble finds a fast evaporating exoplanet

14.12.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>