Studying Acculturation using Transactional Analysis Theory: the Interplay between Existential Positions and Acculturation Styles

Lena Kornyeyeva


This article is a partial report about quantitative research on the role of the Negative Existential Position in Authoritarian Personality formation (reported on elsewhere) and acculturation features among immigrants with authoritarian backgrounds in a democratic milieu (Germany). Data were collected among respondents of different backgrounds: immigrants in Germany from Turkey, the former Soviet Union and Western countries, and native Germans as a quasi-control group (N=1318), with each subsample encompassing at least 200 respondents. Various statistical analyses were performed in order to validate the empirical outcomes (from correlation analysis to structural equation modelling). The hypothesis that a Negative Existential Position is more articulated among individuals who were exposed to an authoritarian socialization was confirmed. The hypothesis that a Negative Existential Position serves as a predictor for the so called Acculturation Dysfunction was confirmed as well. The conceptual analogy between Existential Positions and Styles of Acculturation was examined and the hypothesis that four possible styles of acculturation (Berry et al., 1987, Berry & Kim, 1988; Berry et al., 1989) are correlated with correspondent Existential Position found support.

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Copyright (c) 2011 Lena Kornyeyeva

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International Journal of Transactional Analysis Research & Practice        ISSN 2218-3159