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Berry’s Stress-Coping Framework

The conceptual framework for the current study is based upon Berry’s (1997) stress-coping framework, which considers the cross-cultural experience as a major life event that is characterized by stress, demands cognitive appraisal of the situation, and results in affective, behavioral, and cognitive coping responses. The stress-coping framework focuses on the identification of those factors that function as significant stressors and impair sojourners’ adaptation to the new environment. It also helps to identify those coping resources and strategies sojourners used to deal with their stress. According to Berry, both stress and coping are influenced by characteristics of the individual and the society (situation). The conceptual framework is presented as Fig. 3.1.

Specifically, on the macro-level, characteristics of the society of settlement and society of origin are important. Discriminating features of these societies may include social, political, and demographic factors, such as ethnic composition along with salient attitudes toward ethnic and cultural out-groups. On the microlevel, characteristics of the individual and aspects of the situation exert influences on stress, coping, and adaptation. Berry’s conceptual framework also distinguishes between influences arising prior to and during the sojourn. In the first instance, factors such as age, gender, education, and personality may be important; in the second, coping strategies or social support may be more relevant. Each of these variable sets is discussed below

Stress and coping framework for acculturation research

Fig. 3.1 Stress and coping framework for acculturation research

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