Title

Bilingual first-generation Chinese immigrants' use of ethnic Chinese media in the United Sates

Publication Date

1-1-2003

Degree Name

MA in International and Intercultural Management

First Advisor

Janaki Natarajan

Abstract

This research explores the use of ethnic Chinese media of the bilingual first generation Chinese immigrants (BLFGCI) and its relationship to their cultural identity. It attempts to answer the questions of why this group of immigrants still use Chinese media from the perspective of ethnic identity. It used the unstructured in-depth field interviews to collect data. Ten bilingual first generation Chinese immigrants and five non-English speaking first generation Chinese immigrants as a comparison group were interviewed. The Chinese identity and nostalgia of the bilingual first-generation Chinese immigrants create needs for information about China and other non-information related needs such as relaxation, companionship and diversion. The ethnic Chinese media in America gratifies these needs by providing news about China and content that carries dense cultural messages, such as novels, essays, stories about Chinese history and geography. There is a negative correlation between the strength of one’s American identity at the enacted and relationship level and the need for information about China. The BLFGCI’s need for content that carries intense cultural messages such as fiction and history is relatively steady. It doesn’t vary significantly according to the strength of one’s ethnic identity.

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