Where do my emotions belong? a Study of immigrants' emotional acculturation

Jozefien de Leersnyder, Batja Mesquita, Heejung S. Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

146 Scopus citations


The emotional experiences of people who live together tend to be similar; this is true not only for dyads and groups but also for cultures. It raises the question of whether immigrants' emotions become more similar to host culture patterns of emotional experience; do emotions acculturate? Two studies, on Korean immigrants in the United States (Study 1) and on Turkish immigrants in Belgium (Study 2), measured emotional experiences of immigrants and host group members with the Emotional Patterns Questionnaire. To obtain a measure of the immigrants' emotional similarity to the host group, their individual emotional patterns were correlated to the average pattern of the host group. Immigrants' exposure to and engagement in the host culture, but not their acculturation attitudes, predicted emotional acculturation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)451-463
Number of pages13
JournalPersonality and Social Psychology Bulletin
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2011


  • Acculturation
  • Culture
  • Emotion
  • Emotional similarity
  • Implicit measure


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