SOME ACCULTURATION EXPERIENCES OF THE INDIAN IMMIGRANTS IN PARIS
Verma, J., Patna University, India
The study focuses on the acculturative experiences of 28 people of Indian origin living in Paris. The sample comprised of students, persons in jobs, professions, business and performing artists. Interview questions were clubbed into five broad areas of inquiry namely: (1)Who are the people from India who come to France, what are their aspirations? (2)What are the major hurdles in adaptation? (3)How do they perceive French people? (4)How do the immigrants find the work environment? And (5)Does India still matters? The qualitative data suggested that not knowing the French language was the major hurdle in adaptation, while, Indian Associations had an important role in sustaining and reliving the Indian experience. Besides being perceived as, culturally conscious, aesthetically oriented, nationalists and straight forward, Parisians were also perceived as "closed" people and some believed that there was subtle discrimination against the outsiders. French work culture was generally like in any developed Western country but non-French were not likely to reach the top positions. India mattered for most of the immigrants but very few had plans to return. It is argued that when the immigrants choose to utilize their own cultural values, beliefs and standards for judging the life style, values and preferences of the host culture and its people, they are likely to suffer frustrations in interpersonal relationships and difficulties in adaptation. This modest work has insights for suggesting better intercultural understanding between two cultural groups.