ERIC Number: ED483998
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2004-Mar
Assimilation and Language. Survey Brief
Pew Hispanic Center
The Pew Hispanic Center/Kaiser Family Foundation 2002 National Survey of Latinos explored the attitudes and experiences of Latinos on a wide variety of topics. The survey sample was designed to include enough Hispanics from various backgrounds and national origin groups so that in addition to describing Latinos overall, comparisons also could be made among segments of the Hispanic population. This survey brief looks at the concept of assimilation and how it has been debated extensively in the social science of migration since the early 20th Century, but it is now broadly accepted as a way to describe the ways that immigrants and their off spring change as they come in contact with their host society. The survey asked an extensive battery of questions on language preferences and abilities. The results showed a range of language use--both speaking and reading--in the adult Hispanic population, with almost half (47%) indicating that they are primarily Spanish speakers, around one quarter (28%) indicating they are bilingual, and one quarter (25%) indicating they are primarily English speakers. While the survey demonstrated that there were some important similarities among Hispanics of all language groups, it also highlighted key differences on important issues. Some of the most interesting variation was found on social issues such as divorce, homosexuality, and abortion, and attitudes toward the family. Other differences worthy of note also exist regarding beliefs about what it takes to be successful in the United States, attitudes toward government, and fatalism. In general, the attitudes and beliefs of English-dominant Hispanics are much more similar to those held by non-Latinos than the attitudes and beliefs of Spanish-dominant Latinos.
Descriptors: Acculturation, Hispanic Americans, Comparative Analysis, Language Usage, Spanish Speaking, Bilingualism, English, Beliefs, Social Values
Pew Hispanic Center, 1919 M Street, NW Suite 460, Washington, DC 20036. Tel: 202-452-1702; Fax: 202-785-8282; Web site: http://www.pewhispanic.org. The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation, 2400 Sand Hill Road, Menlo Park, CA 94025. Tel: 650-854-9400; Fax: 650-854-4800; Web site: http://www.kff.org.
Publication Type: Numerical/Quantitative Data; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Pew Hispanic Center, Washington, DC.; Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation, Washington, DC.