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Effect of Ethnic Group Membership on Ethnic Identity

The study under investigation focuses on several specific objectives. First, the authors wanted to examine the relationship between ethnic identity and quality of life (QOL) (Utsey et al. 367). Moreover, the second aim was to investigate the influence of ethnic group membership on stress levels associated with race and ethnic identity (Utsey et al. 367). Following the given two major goals, Utsey et al. introduce their definition of ethnicity, which is related to individuals belonging to African American, Asian American, and Latino/Latina groups (367). This use is justified by the fact that there are some shared customers, traditions, and rituals that help to analyze the selected cohorts and make specific conclusions.

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Examining the relationship between ethnic identity and QOL, the authors rest on Jones’s tripartite model of racism. Following this framework, this phenomenon occurs at three levels: individual, institution, and cultural (Utsey et al. 368). To understand the effects of this stigma, it is vital to address all levels and accept the multidimensionality of racism as the basic premise for the study. At the same time, outlining the correlation between QOL and ethnic belonging, Utsey et al. use the WHO’s model, presupposing four domains: physical, psychological, social relationships, and environment (369). The first one is linked to unpleasant feelings causing distress; the second domain is focused on balance, contentment, and well-being (Utsey et al. 369). The social concept stands for the sense of support, companionship, and love, with the quality of relationships (Utsey et al. 369). Finally, the environment factor deals with resources available for a persona and their ability to suffice (Utsey et al. 369). In such a way, ethnic identity formation and racism directly affect the quality of life domains as they precondition relations between individuals and other groups, their resources, feelings of being supported, or distressful situations.

Attempting to understand the nature of these relations better, the authors offer the following hypothesis. They assumed that ethnic identity and stress linked to race would predict overall QOL in the selected sample (Utsey et al. 369). This idea was offered regarding the differences between ethnic groups and identity. The results of the study prove that there is a direct correlation between these factors and QOL. For instance, for African American participants, the stress associated with race was much higher compared to Asian and Latino individuals (Utsey et al. 371). It means that there the hypothesis suggested by the researchers is correct, and there is a need for the following projects in this sphere.

The authors also conclude that race and ethnicity are two vital components of personality development for minorities. In other words, these aspects are directly correlated with the QOL as they precondition the level of stress, feeling of support, happiness, and relations with other people (Utsey et al. 370). For this reason, they should be considered when conducting research in this sphere. Surprisingly, the authors state that ethnic identity development is associated not only with physiological factors but also with all other domains outlined by WHO. It means that the construct of QOL can be more important and provide a detailed outline of the current individual’s status. The information provided in the paper is linked to the class material as it proves the existence of the relationship between culture and race and a person’s well-being, his/her place in the community, and the ability to enjoy life and achieve specific goals. For this reason, it is vital to continue investigating the problem to acquire more information about it.

Work Cited

Utsey, Shawn, et al. “Effect of Ethnic Group Membership on Ethnic Identity, Race-Related Stress, and Quality of Life.” Cultural Diversity and Ethnic Minority Psychology, vol. 8, no. 4, 2002, pp. 366-377.

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