Studying Immigration Through Social Sciences

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Ever since the beginning of our existence, humans have been in motion. Whether travelling across entire continents by foot or catching a bus to a new apartment, we never seem to stay in the same spot. As our perceptions of the world grew larger and more concrete, so did our desire to explore and experience it; immigration has been a very of people have been Approximately 235, 825 immigrants move to Canada each year (StatCan, 2004). With this massive volume of new people from all over the globe entering our country, it seems inevitable that conflicts are encountered. These conflicts can be analysed using the three major social sciences: anthropology, psychology and sociology. Anthropologists might examine the beginnings of immigration, colonisation and the movements of earlier humans, and try to determine how this effects immigration today. Psychologists might study the effects immigration has on the individual, such as stress, self-esteem and developmental disruptions in children, as well as the difficulties these individuals face with adjusting to new cultures. Sociologists would probably examine the social stigmas immigrants encounter, the amount and quality of jobs and education available to them, as well as the development of the Canadian immigration system from its birth to today. While it is important to consider all three perspectives when dealing with the subject of immigration, sociology and psychology offer the most insight into this topic. Using a psychological perspective, one would study the effects immigration has on the individual. It is fairly common knowledge that any kind of change effects an individual, whether it be change in family relations, monetary gain or social status; but when all these changes happen at once, it can be very devastating. Oliva M. Espin, author of Women Crossing Boundries: a psychology of immigration and
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