Date of Award
MA - Master of Arts
Dr. Tamar Hadar, MT-BC
According to the APA’s Presidential Task Force on Immigration (2012), the immigrant population within the US increases every year. Immigration to a new country increases risk factors for young immigrants, resulting in a negative impact on their mental health. It has been shown in the literature that arts-based approaches can be extremely helpful in the treatment of mental health issues brought on by the stressors of immigration and when people are dealing with a sense of loss towards their country of origin. For first generation immigrants, coming to the US during their adolescence, as young adults, means that they are still developing a sense of identity. In that case, the change in environment is shown to potentially have a negative effect not only on the individual’s mental health but also on their sense of identity. In my thesis I argue that participating in expressive arts-based groups may be helpful in cultivating resilience, creating a supportive community, and in providing a container for immigrants’ experiences, particularly for first generation immigrants as they develop their identities and navigate the different aspects that help to shape their identities.
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De Castro, Jessika, "Exploring Identity Development Through the Expressive Arts among Immigrant Youth, A Literature Review" (2021). Expressive Therapies Capstone Theses. 518.
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