When people leave their country to go to live or study in a new country, it is common for them to undergo a process of adaption to the new country and its culture. Many researchers call this process ‘acculturation’. The American researcher, Robin Scarcella, has outlined a four-stage theory of acculturation (1998), and her article provides the main theoretical background to this essay. For this main an immigrant person to New Zealand was interviewed, and his experience is discussed throughout this essay. This essay will discuss the experience of the interviewee in the light of the theory of acculturation, with final comments on the importance of understanding the process of acculturation.
My interviewee was a young man aged about 20~25 years old. He came from Japan, and has been in New Zealand for 3 years. He came to New Zealand to find a job. To protect the interviewee’s anonymity, I will call him Jack. In his home country ‘Jack’ was unhappy, because he could not find a job. He said Japan was a small country where there are too many people and it was difficult to find a high income work. He thought New Zealand was a nice place to find the job he want because the population on New Zealand was not very high. In New Zealand he hopes to get a high paid jobs.
According to Winkelman (1994), in the first stage of life in the new country, immigrant people generally feel some extra happiness “mixed with the excitement of being into the new country”. This is called the “honeymoon stage” (1994. p123). Winkelman calls this stages tourist “the honeymoon is characterized by interest, excitement, euphoria, sleeplessness, positive expectations, and idealizations about the new culture” (1994. p123). Jack reported that when he first time arrived in the New Zealand, he felt a lot of excitement. For example a person visited a new people and new culture, travel to new places. Jack said that he was very happy with visited a new things.
The second stage in the...
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