Me, Myself and Us? The Relationship between Ethnic Identity and Hope, Resilience and Family Relationships among Different Ethnic Groups

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Lisa Zaretsky
Mitchell Clark


For ethnic minority populations, ethnic identity is associated with an increase in psychological well-being while also being recognized as a protective factor against discrimination and family distress. The aim of this study is to determine the association between ethnic identity and resilience, hope, social connectedness, experiences of discrimination and family relations in a diverse group of ethnicities. This study is correlational in nature and took place at Mount Royal University, located in Calgary, Alberta, Canada, between January and April 2019. We included 326 introductory psychology students ranging in age from 17 to 48 with participants identifying as White, Asian, South Asian, Mixed, Black, Latino, First Nations, Metis, Inuit, and Middle Eastern. Participants were asked to complete six questionnaires measuring ethnic identity, resilience, hope, social connectedness, experiences of discrimination and family relations. Results revealed a significant relationship between ethnic identity and hope (r = .14, p = .01). Additionally, family relationships were a significant moderator of the relationship between ethnic identity and resilience (F(1, 322) = 4.98, p < .05). Finally, White participants had a significantly weaker ethnic identity when compared to the Asian, South Asian and Black participants (Welch’s F(7,41) = 9.39, p = .001,η 2= .22). Ethnic identity is associated with higher levels of hope, while strong family relationships moderate the relationship between ethnic identity and resilience. Furthermore, individuals who identify as White have a weaker ethnic identity compared to individuals who identify as Asian, South Asian and Black. More research is required to understand ethnic identity in the White population to help bring awareness to the power and privilege associated with Whiteness and to find ways in which this awareness can help reduce systemic racism and discrimination.

Ethnic identity, resilience, hope, social connectedness, discrimination, family relations, whiteness.

Article Details

How to Cite
Zaretsky, L., & Clark, M. (2019). Me, Myself and Us? The Relationship between Ethnic Identity and Hope, Resilience and Family Relationships among Different Ethnic Groups. Journal of Education, Society and Behavioural Science, 32(2), 1-14.
Original Research Article


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