This paper explains the social integration experiences of a group of second-generation Canadian youths who identify primarily with the cultures of India, Pakistan, and Bangladesh. This group of young Canadians connected with more than one community or place, and for them, leisure was often the vehicle that allowed them to enter and exit three different functional communities with relative ease. These communities are described as the place of their traditional family and home, the place of the dominant culture, and finally, diverse or multicultural leisure places. The results of this study suggest the advantages of ensuring children and youths have opportunities in school and in leisure and recreation activities to learn about diverse cultural practices and to develop friendships with people from a variety of cultural backgrounds. Further investigation of this particular group is required if we are to understand the long-term implications of their leisure mobility and if, due to that mobility, they have been able to establish a desired level of connection in the various communities they have experienced.
Cet article relate l'integration sociale d'un groupe de jeunes canadiens de deuxieme generation qui ont des liens culturels avec l'Inde, le Pakistan et le Bangladesh. On retrouve ces jeunes Canadiens dans plusieurs lieux et au sein de plusieurs communautes, leurs loisirs leur permettant de joindre et de quitter aisement ces trois communautes fonctionnelles differentes. Leurs familles traditionnelles, leurs maisons familiales, leurs cultures dominantes, et les lieux de loisirs multiculturels se trouvent dans ces communautes. Les resultats de cette etude demontrent qu'il est important de s'assurer que les jeunes ont l'occasion, a l'ecole ou pendant leurs activites parascolaires, de decouvrir differentes pratiques culturelles et de developper des amities avec des personnes issues de milieux culturels varies. Nous devrons entreprendre plus d'etudes portant sur ce groupe afin de comprendre les consequences a long terme de leur mobilite dans le contexte de leurs activites de loisirs et d'examiner si cette mobilite leur a permis d'etablir un lien avec les differentes communautes parmi lesquelles il circule.
For people who have migrated from one country to another, the prospect of being accepted in their new place of residence may be extraordinarily challenging. Arrival and settlement in strange places is usually accompanied by a sense of disembeddedness, or lack of connection to neighbours and colleagues (Jamieson 2000). As part of the transition from one country or settlement to another, new immigrants often seek social support and acceptance in their new communities (Bauman 1996; Jackson 1994; Wolf 1997). However, problems associated with becoming a member of a community are particularly daunting when immigrants are relocating to a place where cultural norms and practices are vastly different from the ones they have known in their countries of origin.
One of the primary reasons for immigration is to improve one's economic well being. In recent decades, migration flows have been from "East" to "West," that is, from the former Soviet Union and from Eastern bloc countries to the United States, Canada, and Israel, and from countries of the "South" to countries of the "North," as from South Asia to Canada (Chiswick and Miller 2002). The young people whose situation is discussed in this paper fall into the latter group; their families immigrated to Canada from South Asia. In these recent migrations, people arriving in a host country like Canada often look and sound different from the residents of the host country, and their distinctiveness in terms of language, clothing, religion, and other cultural practices may result in their marginalization. To learn the language skills necessary to get jobs and to achieve a sense of belonging, immigrant groups may cluster into concentrated areas of similar immigrants or enclaves where they find important sources of social support, whether that be in employment opportunities, leisure, education, or shelter. Those who enter the host community without the help of friends and family members from their country of origin may find they have no alternative but to try to assimilate quickly into the dominant society, but this process is likely to be extraordinarily challenging (Chiswick and Miller 2002).
Leisure has been found to provide some of the most rewarding and supportive social relationships leading to social integration and social inclusion (Coleman 1993; Tirone and Pedlar 2000). But North-American values associated with leisure may be unfamiliar to immigrants and may, in fact, be contrary to what is considered important in everyday life. For instance, in Canada, the dominant White culture tends to view the home as just one of the places where leisure is enjoyed, and it is often of secondary importance to leisure and social integration that occurs in places outside the home such as arenas, gyms, bars, restaurants, and so on. This aspect of leisure, which takes people out of their homes and into public places, may be especially challenging for immigrants unfamiliar with the norms and values of the dominant North American culture (Tirone and Shaw 1997).
Individuals who are born in one country to parents who are immigrants from another know first-hand the culture, values, and beliefs of their parents' host community, and they also know, and may have strong allegiance to, the culture, values, and beliefs of their parents' countries of origin. Some research has explored the challenges faced by second-generation youths whose lives may be deemed problematic because they are part of two worlds (see, for example, Bhabha 1996 and Wolf 1997). This paper examines leisure as it is experienced by young adults whose parents emigrated from South Asia to Canada. In presenting these experiences, the authors draw upon the second-stage findings of a longitudinal study of the leisure and lifeways of these young people as they reached adulthood and discovered the world of the larger dominant culture, while continuing to maintain deep associations with the smaller, South-Asian community into which they were born. (For accounts of the first phase of the study, see Tirone and Pedlar 2000; Tirone 1997b and 2000.)
The current paper expands upon the social integration experiences of this group of second-generation South Asians who identify primarily with the cultures of India, Pakistan, and Bangladesh. These countries were the original homes of their parents, who immigrated to Canada where the participants were born and/or raised and where they were educated. This group of young Canadians is connected with more than one community or place, and for them, leisure was often the vehicle that allowed them to enter and exit three different functional communities with relative ease. These communities are described as the place of their traditional family and home, the place of the dominant culture, and finally, diverse or multicultural leisure places. The implications of their movement between these places will be discussed.
The theoretical framework for this study incorporated elements of acculturation theory relevant to second-generation Canadians (Herberg 1993), cultural pluralism (Elliott and Fleras 1990), theories of part-cultures (Bhabha 1996), and theory developed from the 1996 study related to balancing two cultural traditions (Tirone and Pedlar 2000). Also of theoretical relevance is the fact that, because of its inductive and longitudinal nature, this study was able to examine the process of social integration and adjustment experienced by a particular group of ethnic minority Canadians over a period of five years.
REVIEW OF RELATED LITERATURE
Acculturation Strategies and Belonging
Many immigrant groups are encouraged to develop acculturation strategies in order to become more similar to the dominant cultural group and possibly have a greater likelihood of fitting in. Assimilation means that immigrants adopt the culture of the dominant group. The underlying assumption of assimilation …