Cultural variations on parenting : a cross cultural analysis between Indian and Finnish families
1University of Oulu, Faculty of Education, Educational Sciences
|Online Access:||PDF Full Text (PDF, 1 MB)|
|Persistent link:|| http://urn.fi/URN:NBN:fi:oulu-201606042357
|Publish Date:|| 2016-06-06
|Thesis type:||Master's thesis
This study examines the cross-cultural impact on parenting orientations of Indian families raising their children in Finland. In order to study the impact of Finnish culture on Indian parenting, parenting orientations of Finnish and Indian families living in Finland were studied. The parenting practices and associated cultural values and beliefs were studied intergenerationally and cross-culturally. Hall’s (1989) Cultural Iceberg Model is used to look at the visible and invisible aspects of a culture and its relation with parenting practices. Parenting philosophies with respect to the support and encouragement in learning process, parental control, academic aspirations, gender perspective and cultural beliefs were the specified areas that were explored. Semi-structured interviews were conducted on 4 Finnish and 5 Indian parents, who have at least one child of age 7 and onward. Phenomenology was used as a qualitative research method.
The research findings show that Indian parents, who were raised in a traditional-patriarch social hierarchy in India, are raising their children in Finland by providing them partial autonomy, encouragement and support, taking active interest in their lives, promoting them to be independent and preparing them for the future. Indian parents have accepted the cultural differences of Finnish culture in their lives but the root values of Indian-ness are not comprised upon. This can be observed when their parenting practices include moral values, extra protectiveness and restricting their children on the interrelationships with the opposite sex. The acceptance of cultural differences by Indian parents are reflected in their changed methods of discipline, less hierarchical and open communication, introducing a range of hobbies to their children and making an active effort to connect to their children.
No gender biases have been noticed in the parenting practices of Indian and Finnish parents. The amount of academic pressure by parents is less as compared to India but the expectations from children to succeed and opt for a noble profession is eminent. The term ‘third culture kids’ have been used for the children of the Indian parents, who are being raised in Finnish society. The study showed cross-cultural effect on these third culture kids, who have different worldviews, than their parents and identify themselves as a global citizen rather than embracing either Indian or Finnish identity.
Parenting orientations of Finnish families depicted two-way communication, supporting children to pursue individual interests and enough liberty on children’s pathways. Their parenting and social values of individual identity has a strong impact on Indian children as well who are raised here. The strong foundation of Finnish society is based on some of the moral values like ‘Sisu’ meaning Perseverance and Dedication, Trust, Honesty and Punctuality.
The author trusts that this study and the research findings would be beneficial for further research in the related areas.
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