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Sinjini Ghosh

Masters in Counselling Psychology student
CHRIST (Deemed To Be) University
Bengaluru – 560029, Karnataka (India)

Miriam Priti Mohan

Assistant Professor
Christ (Deemed to be) University
Bengaluru – 560029, Karnataka (India)


Ethnic identity is a dynamic, multidimensional construct that refers to one’s identity, or sense of self as a member of an ethnic group that is identity is constructed and modified as individuals become aware of their ethnicity, within the larger socio-cultural setting. Achievement of ethnic identity has been found to be an important predictor of self-esteem. It is usually during adolescence that individuals head from an unexamined state of ethnic identity to ethnic identity search as they have interactions that cause them to explore their identities. In a country as diverse as India, the metropolitan societies off er multiple avenues of encounters and interactions with ethnicity, it is a difficult process to achieve and establish ethno-regional identity for emerging adults and middle-aged adults. This correlational study aimed to explore the relationship between ethnic identity and self-esteem in emerging adults and middle-aged individuals living in urban India, and to evaluate differences in the two generations. The findings were that emerging adults had greater ethnic identity search than middle-aged adults, and middle-aged adults had greater self-esteem. It was also seen that middle-aged adults who were still in search of ethnic identity had lower self-esteem. This indicates the importance of ethnic identity achievement for self-esteem in adults across generations in urban India.

Key words: Ethnic Identity, Self-Esteem, Emerging Adults, Middle- Aged Adults, Intergenerational.

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