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Article

A Three-Generation Study of Acculturation and Identity of the Russian Minority in the Republic of North Ossetia–Alania

Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology. 2018. Vol. 49. No. 6. P. 976-992.

This article examines relationships between social identities and acculturation strategies of
Russians (the ethnic minority) in the Republic of North Ossetia–Alania (RNO-A). The sample
included 109 grandparent–parent–adolescent triads from ethnically Russian families (N =
327). We assessed acculturation strategies, ethnic and national identities (identification with
the Russian Federation), republican identity (with the RNO-A), regional identity (with North
Caucasus), and religious identity. EFA combined five identities in two factors, labeled Russian
ethnocultural identity (comprising ethnic, national, and religious identities) and North-Caucasian
regional identity (comprising identities involving the republic and region). The means of the
identity factors remained remarkably stable across generations, with a somewhat stronger
Russian ethnocultural identity. A structural equation model revealed that Russian ethnocultural
identity was a negative predictor of assimilation (the least preferred acculturation strategy),
whereas North-Caucasian regional identity was a positive predictor of integration (the most
preferred strategy) in all generations. We concluded that Russian ethnocultural identity is
important for maintaining the heritage culture whereas North-Caucasian regional identity
promotes participation of ethnic Russians in the multicultural North-Ossetian society.