Class Notes (809,444)
Canada (493,713)
Sociology (794)
SOC271 (32)
Lecture 16

SOC271 Lecture 16: March 21- Chapter 12 (Lecture and textbook)

8 Pages
Unlock Document

University of Alberta
Robin Willey

Chapter 12- Building Bridges: Immigrant, Visible Minority and Aboriginal Families in the 21 Century - Since the 1970s, Canada has been one of the primary destination points of immigrants from around the world – increasing ethnic diversity - As a result of such a dramatic change in the population makeup, the traditional framework of class and community has been replaced by the framework of ethnicity and multiculturalism in understanding the role of family o Ethnic diversification has now become a major feature of social structure and personal relationships in society - Changes also have impact minority families in that family adjustment is particularly difficult for individuals whose language, customs, and values are different from those of native-born Canadians o Individuals required to adapt to a new cultural environment that generates a high level of uncertainty and stress - Immigration can amputate long-standing social networks and secondary ties from the immigrant’s relational world The Diverse Canadian Family: Demographic Profile Immigrants - Early immigrants were from the US, UK and Western Europe – nearly all were white and held Judeo-Christian religious beliefs - With the passage of new immigration rules in the 1960s, overt discrimination against non-white source countries were eliminated o Discrimination- negative or positive behaviour towards a person based on attitudes held towards the group to which that person belongs o As a result, immigrants from around the world have come to Canada to find a better life for themselves and their children - Over the past decade, 2.2 million immigrants were admitted to Canada - ~ 1 in 10 families in Canada is comprised of recent immigrants - Top 3 countries that people have immigrated from since 1991 is China, India, and the Philippines - The immigration rate in Canada is 2x as high as in the US and higher than any other G8 country - Canada officially adopted a multiculturalism policy in 1971 o Multiculturalism- a policy that Canada adopted in 1971 to support the cultural development of ethnocultural groups nd to help members of ethnocultural groups overcome barriers to full participation in Canadian society o Guided by 3 objectives: ▪ Development of a strong economy ▪ Family reunification ▪ Support for our international obligations and humanitarian goals with respect to refugees - 2/3s of the immigrants are ages 15-44 – foreign-born persons are under-represented at younger ages and over- represented at older ages (have a median age of 47 compared to Canadian-born which is 37) - The proportion of men:women is similar to that of the Canadian-born population, but when comparing specific ethnic groups, there are wide variations - The fertility rate of Canadian women has been towards significantly lower birth rates (1.47 children/women in 2010) – however, for immigrant women, the fertility rate is significantly higher (3.1), but for immigrant women who arrived in Canada 15 years ago the rate is 1.5 o Fertility rates decline after they arrive in Canada, eventually equalling the Canadian rate - The low fertility rate of women has resulted in a 60% decline in the rate of natural increase in our population over the past 20 years – if it continues for another 20 years, the number of deaths will exceed the number of births - Recent immigrants are more likely to live in extended families o One reason may be cultural; another may be financial Visible Minorities - Rapid growth in Canada in both the number and proportion of people belonging to a visible minority group o Visible minority- persons, other than Aboriginal people, not white in race or colour - South Asians are the largest visible minority group today and one combined with the Chinese, make up ½ of the visible minority population - This new “rainbow” population has led to new conceptions about how Canadians view themselves and how others are defined within our society - Visible minority status is now one of the 4 designations: o Women - Visible minority o Disabled - Aboriginal Aboriginal Peoples - As identified in the Constitution Act are comprised of 3 separate groups: o Indians (or First Nations) o Metis o Inuit - All of these groups have been subjected to a variety of policies and programs of the government since well before Confederation (ex. Indian Act) - ~3% of the Canadian population identify themselves as Aboriginal - Number has been increasing – reflects decreased death rates, continued high birth rates, legal changes as to who can be a “registered Indian” and more individuals willing to identify themselves as Aboriginal - Aboriginal population is young – nearly 1/3 of all in Canada are under the age of 14, and the median age is ~25 – reflects a fertility rate over 3.4, over 2x the national rate - Occupy the lowest levels of education, occupation, labour force participation, and income - Participation is almost every institutional order of Canadian society is marginal and they continue to struggle to maintain their culture and traditions - Have a long history of their family organization and structure being under attack from the dominant society – residential schools o Nearly 5 generations were subjected to programs that systematically destroyed the structure and functioning of Aboriginal families, climaxed by the “Sixties Scoop” when thousands of children from “dysfunctional” Aboriginal families were removed from their homes and sent to distant foster homes and for adoption Socioeconomic Location in Canadian Society - Socioeconomic status has a great impact on the structure and functioning of the family - Those who have a reasonable income can obtain adequate housing, provide social amenities for family members, achieve higher educational goals, and develop interpersonal skills – for those who live in poverty, family quality of life is marginal in almost every dimension - Wealth inequality has increased over the past 20 years with substantial declining median wealth for recent immigrants - In 2005, 1/3 of the children who had at least one parent immigrating to Canada in the past decade were living in poverty Residence - Where families reside has important consequences for their employment, development of networks, and ability to draw on community support - Over 80% of all immigrants reside in BC, Quebec and Ontario and within these provinces over 75% live in Vancouver, Montreal, and Toronto o Immigrants now make up a significant percentage of the populations of major urban centers - 2 principal reasons for choosing major urban centers: o A family member or close friend was already living in the area o The perception of greater employment opportunities - Nearly ½ of the Aboriginal population lives in urban areas, with more than 25% living in 10 metropolitan areas across Canada - This population is much more mobile than non-Aboriginals – creates many challenges for Aboriginal families in the areas of education, social services, housing, and health care - With the increase in the number of visible minorities comes an expansion of visible minority neighbourhoods in urban centers o Has short- and long-term implications for selecting marriage partners, job opportunities, and socialization techniques o Many of these neighbourhoods are poor, have a high percentage of recent immigrants, and contain a high proportion of visible minorities o However, thee concentrations are not “ghettos” o These concentrations create social networks in the neighbourhood, develop social capital, and produce high levels of institutional completeness ▪ Institutional completeness- the development of many institutions (ex. banking, shopping, education, religion) to meet the needs of members of a particular ethnic group o These types of ethnic communities allow the groups to develop a hybrid type of identity and maintain social control mechanisms over family and community members Family Issues Family Structure and Organization - It’s estimated that nearly ½ of the children born since 1980 will spend at least part of their childhood with fewer than 2 parents in the home, and among those with 2 parents, frequently one is a step-parent - 2006 was the first time couples without children outnumbered couples with children - Growing proportion of delayed childbearing - Most European and Asian families follow a patrilineal kinship structure – kinship is traced through father’s line - Many Aboriginal groups follow a matrilineal kinship structure – over the years, the dominant Euro-Canadian group has sought to impose its own policies onto Aboriginal peoples o However, people in many First Nations communities still recognize the importance and power of women and respect “powerful women” who support the community - More Aboriginals than non- have never been married; more non-Aboriginals are married - The separation and divorce rates of Aboriginals and non-Aboriginals are similarly comparable, although the percentage of those who are widowed is much lower for Aboriginals - Birth and fertility rates are much higher for Aboriginal people th - Organization of the Aboriginal family was profoundly changed during 20 century in 2 separate actions: o Establishment of residential schools, where young Aboriginal children (estimated at 125,000) were forcibly removed from their families and sent to live in boarding schools o Led to the underdevelopment of parenting skills for several generations – Aboriginal children since the 60s still forcibly removed, but this time from social services, an sent to non-Aboriginal families - In terms of household activity, Aboriginal and no-Aboriginals reveal similar patterns for such activities as housework, child care, and elder care - When immigrants come to Canada, they’re faced with a decision as to how they’ll cope with their new social environment – can try to preserve the culture of their origin, can try to become “Canadian” as quickly as possible, or can develop a hybrid that incorporates both the “old” and the “new” - 3 coping strategies employed by immigrants: 1. Unicultural- involves the parents remaining as the primary socializing agents 2. Rapid assimilation- is for parents to withdraw as the chief socializing agent and defer to other agents in the new country (ex, teachers, social services professionals) 3. Bicultural- encouraging the child to live in a bicultural world whereby in the home and for family –related activities, the parents are the chief socializing agents, but outside the home the children are expected to conform to the culture of their new environment o Each strategy involves risks and benefits, although the unicultural strategy has the highest risk for immigrant families because retaining one’s “home” culture while residing in Canada can result in a lack of integration and reduce social and economic opportunities - New forms of families have emerged over time – split household- organized according to time and space so that over time a family is distributed over a long distance or wider expanse of space o Somewhat unique to Asian immigrants - 3 different types of extended family: 1. Upward extended- parents or older relatives of the head of household also live in the home 2. Downward extended- occur where the children and/or grandchildren of the head of household live in the same residence 3. Horizontal extended families- the sibling or close relatives (ex. cousins) of the head of household live in the same home Family Conflict - 3 conflict patterns in families: o One pattern emerges when the husband takes on the instrumental role and the wife takes on the emotional role. Over time, if one becomes more isolated or dependent on the other, the other person will see the second as “ignorant and a burden” which will lead to spousal conflict o When women get new opportunities after marriage and this new situation gives her self-confidence to challenge the traditional power distribution and role allocation. Alternatively, if the man experiences a status change that decreases his power in the family, he may try to maintain dominance by referring to old norms and riles that legitimize relations as they were before o Generational conflicts common as the children are growing up in a different social milieu from that in which their parents were raised - Economic necessity for many immigrant and Aboriginal families requires that women and/or children enter the labour market – tends to reverse the “provider” role that may be expected in their homeland o Immigrant women and children are able to enter the labour market more quickly than men because of the availability of low-paying jobs for females/youths, and thus they become the principal breadwinners for the family - When conditions escalate/become chronic, the conflict mat turn to emotional or physical abuse inflict
More Less

Related notes for SOC271

Log In


Don't have an account?

Join OneClass

Access over 10 million pages of study
documents for 1.3 million courses.

Sign up

Join to view


By registering, I agree to the Terms and Privacy Policies
Already have an account?
Just a few more details

So we can recommend you notes for your school.

Reset Password

Please enter below the email address you registered with and we will send you a link to reset your password.

Add your courses

Get notes from the top students in your class.