Dual Identity Development of Muslim Minority Adolescents in Western Europe: Links to Intergroup Contact and Adjustment 

Spiegler, O. (University of Oxford, UK), Wölfer, R. (University of Oxford, UK), Hewstone, M., (University of Oxford, UK) 

Muslims constitute a large and increasing part of the migrant population in Europe, yet they are an understudied minority group, and an at-risk population for identity-based threats. We used a person-oriented approach to examine the ethnic and national identity development of Muslim minority adolescents in four Western European countries (N = 2,145, MT1 = 15 years). On a sample-averaged level, identities were stable across three waves of annual measurement. The results of a parallel process growth-mixture model, however, pointed toward four distinct groups of adolescents: (1) moderate, increasing dual identities, (2) developing moderate dual identities from initial identity separation, (3) developing moderate dual identities from initial identity assimilation, and (4) consistently separated identities. Separation was linked to a lack of majority group friends, higher perceived discrimination, and behavioural adjustment problems. Initial assimilation was linked to less psychological well-being. The study points toward considerable heterogeneity and demonstrates that the process of dual identity development, not simply the outcome, matters in terms of adjustment. 


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Culture and Social Identity