ERIC Number: ED141235
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1972
The Italian American Family: The Southern Italian Family's Process of Adjustment to an Urban America.
Tomasi, Lydio F.
The author discusses the acculturation process of first, second, and third generation Italian families in the United States in terms of the interrelationships among cultural, social, and psychological events. As background to the discussion, the role of the family is described. In southern Italy, the nuclear family is the essential feature of the social system. It is dominated by an authoritarian father, godparents are very significant figures, male children are social and economic assets, and female children are protected socially. Family relationships give the individual status and a guarantee of security. Upon immigration to America, however, Italian values conflict with Anglo-American orientations toward individualism and mastery over nature. Alienation and other psychological crises arise because of the immigrants' familistic personality orientation. In first-generation families, intercultural and intergenerational conflict and changes occur, often marked by isolation and anomie. Most second-generation families exhibit a move toward shaping the structure and functions of the family in accordance with the contemporary urban American type of family. Third-generation families show even more influence of industrialization and urbanization on fertility, child rearing, class status, and occupational choice. (AV)
Descriptors: Acculturation, Cultural Background, Ethnic Groups, Ethnic Studies, Family Role, Family (Sociological Unit), Immigrants, Italian Americans, Nuclear Family, Social Adjustment, Social History
Center for Migration Studies, 209 Flagg Place, Staten Island, New York, New York 10304 ($1.00 paperbound)
Publication Type: Books
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Center for Migration Studies, Inc., Staten Island, NY.