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Relations between Second Language Proficiency and National Identification: The Case of Immigrants in Germany


Hochman, Oshrat; Davidov, Eldad (2014). Relations between Second Language Proficiency and National Identification: The Case of Immigrants in Germany. European Sociological Review (ESR), 30(3):344-359.

Abstract

This paper discusses and empirically tests the relations between language proficiency and national identification with Germany among first generation immigrants in Germany. It presents three theoretical arguments: (1) language proficiency positively affects national identification; and contrastingly (2) national identification positively influences language proficiency; and (3) there is a reciprocal relationship between both constructs. To test these potentially contradictory claims empirically, we utilize data on first generation immigrants in Germany measured in four waves (1997, 1999, 2001 and 2003) from the German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP) study. Language proficiency is operationalized with the variable proficiency in German language. Hypotheses are tested using autoregressive cross-lagged structural equation models. Findings demonstrate an effect of language proficiency on national identification among immigrants in Germany. However, data provide no support for an effect in the other direction.

This paper discusses and empirically tests the relations between language proficiency and national identification with Germany among first generation immigrants in Germany. It presents three theoretical arguments: (1) language proficiency positively affects national identification; and contrastingly (2) national identification positively influences language proficiency; and (3) there is a reciprocal relationship between both constructs. To test these potentially contradictory claims empirically, we utilize data on first generation immigrants in Germany measured in four waves (1997, 1999, 2001 and 2003) from the German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP) study. Language proficiency is operationalized with the variable proficiency in German language. Hypotheses are tested using autoregressive cross-lagged structural equation models. Findings demonstrate an effect of language proficiency on national identification among immigrants in Germany. However, data provide no support for an effect in the other direction.

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7 citations in Web of Science®
7 citations in Scopus®
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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:06 Faculty of Arts > Institute of Sociology
Dewey Decimal Classification:300 Social sciences, sociology & anthropology
Uncontrolled Keywords:Immigrants; Second language proficiency; National identification; Autoregressive cross-lagged models; German Socioeconomic Panel Data (SOEP)
Language:English
Date:2014
Deposited On:04 Apr 2014 12:34
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 17:48
Publisher:Oxford University Press
ISSN:0266-7215
Funders:Scientific Exchange Program (Switzerland), Research Priority Program ‘Social Networks’, University of Zurich
Additional Information:This is a pre-copyedited, author-produced PDF of an article accepted for publication in European Sociological Review following peer review. The definitive publisher-authenticated version (Hochman, Oshrat; Davidov, Eldad (2014). Relations between Second Language Proficiency and National Identification: The Case of Immigrants in Germany. European Sociological Review (ESR):Epub ahead of print) is available here: http://esr.oxfordjournals.org/content/early/2014/03/22/esr.jcu043.full.pdf+html.
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1093/esr/jcu043
Official URL:http://esr.oxfordjournals.org/content/early/2014/03/22/esr.jcu043.full.pdf+html
Permanent URL: https://doi.org/10.5167/uzh-94907

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