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Patterns of Acculturation from eastern to western Europe 1 Koby Lee Sociology 398 – Sociology of Culture in Western Europe Dr. Cruise Thursday 11 – 1:30 26 June 2017 Patterns of Acculturation from Eastern to Western Europe Using data that they gathered from the European Social Survey (ESS), Researchers R. Fitzgerald, L. Winstone, and Y. Prestage have examined patterns of acculturation in people who have migrated
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  Patterns of Acculturation from eastern to western Europe 1 Koby Lee Sociology 398  –   Sociology of Culture in Western Europe Dr. Cruise Thursday 11  –   1:30 26 June 2017 Patterns of Acculturation from Eastern to Western Europe Using data that they gathered from the European Social Survey (ESS), Researchers R. Fitzgerald, L. Winstone, and Y. Prestage have examined patterns of acculturation in people who have migrated into western Europe from eastern European countries of srcin. To show these  patterns, these researchers focused on changing attitudes regarding Homosexuality. Through their data, they discovered that eastern European countries held majority anti-homosexual sentiments, while western European countries typically held tolerant, more accepting views. Using this, researchers examined the attitudes of migrants who were leaving an eastern European country to settle in western Europe, and recorded whether their attitudes regarding homosexuality changed from their srcinal attitudes based on the amount of time they spent in western Europe. They found that the majority of eastern European migrants who settled in western European countries integrated into the new host countries’ views of homosexuality, and that this shift in attitudes was most prominent among those who immigrated for twenty years or more.  Patterns of Acculturation from eastern to western Europe 2 The focus of this article was to examine whether patterns of acculturation existed among eastern European people who were migrating to western European countries. In order to focus on these patterns, researchers needed to use a topic in which views between eastern and western European countries were vastly different. As such, they chose to focus on the contrasting views regarding Homosexuality. As shown in the article, views of Homosexuality in eastern European countries were mostly hostile, with many countries having laws that banned any relations  between two people of the same sex. Western European countries, however, held much more accepting sentiments, with many having laws that protect Gay and Lesbian people from discrimination (Fitzgerald, Winstone, & Prestage 2). Fitzgerald, Winstone, and Prestage used this divide as a way to examine the rates of acculturation within eastern European migrant communities. They studied views of Homosexuality within these migrant communities repeatedly, and noted any changes over a period of time. Their data revealed that younger migrants were more likely to have a shift in perspective than older migrants, that the rate of acceptance was lower in men than in women, and that a change in view was most prominent if the migrant stayed in a western European country for more than twenty years. While reading this article, I found these discoveries to be unsurprising. The longer a  person stays in an area that has a drastically different culture from their own, the more likely they are to integrate into some part of that culture. It is also safe to assume that the younger said  person is, the more open they would be to new ideologies. I found it interesting that some central European countries held such strong perspectives given their geographical location, but this was quickly explained. As an example, the article refers to Poland as evidence that many of the countries that have strong, or harsh views regarding Homosexuality were previously controlled  by a predominantly Socialist government, and as such, many still held critical perspectives on  Patterns of Acculturation from eastern to western Europe 3 things that fell outside of what the society felt was “normal” or right (Fitzgerald et al 2).  I did find that many of the differing views on Homosexuality that are discussed in the article were  prominent during my study abroad within Western Europe.   While I was reading the article, I felt that it directly related to my personal experiences when it discussed that more open, tolerant views were prominent in areas that were economically advanced. During my time abroad, I noticed that in the smaller areas that were associated with specific migrant groups, and in areas where residents spoke specific languages associated with eastern countries, there were more negative attitudes directed at any paraphernalia that expressed positive attitudes regarding Homosexuality, and in some areas there were even people who were quoting Bible scriptures on the street corners regarding Homosexuality. On the opposing end of this, however, I noticed that in the larger areas of the cities, same-sex couples were more openly comfortable, and I would see more shops and propaganda that were expressing positive views of same-sex couples. Throughout their article, Researchers Fitzgerald, Winstone, and Prestage examine the  patterns of acculturation within groups who were migrating from Eastern to Western Europe. To do this, they focused on shifting views of Homosexuality, and whether time spent in western European countries would influence the migrants’ negative views of it. Through their data, they discovered that many migrants who stayed in a western European country for 20 years or more had a change in view, that younger migrants were more open to the new ideology, and that women became acclimated better than men.  Patterns of Acculturation from eastern to western Europe 4 References Fitzgerald, R., Winstone, L., & Prestage, Y. (2014). Searching for evidence of acculturation: Attitudes toward homosexuality among migrants moving from Eastern to Western Europe.  International Journal of Public Opinion Research , 26  (3), 323-341.
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