It is defined as the process by which a person, a group or an entire people adapts and assimilates a cultural system that is foreign to it, be it the customs of daily life or the traits such as the traditions of it. This process has occurred throughout the history of human existence, but it really manifested itself in certain studies at the end of the 19th century and the beginning of the 20th century, taking into account that it can be seen in a positive or negative way.
That is why it can be said that acculturation is divided into 2 groups :
- Imposition: the process is vehemently carried out by annulling their customs and beliefs, for example, colonization.
- Peaceful: the process in which two cultures collide and one of them calmly changes, for example, migration.
Loss of the languages of the American native peoples
There are some groups of people who still use indigenous languages thanks to what they have learned from their ancestors , although in many regions of the world they are on the verge of disappearance, for example, Quechua, Aymara, Nahuatl and Guarani.
Today it can be seen that in South America they have Portuguese and Spanish as official languages, in North America English and French are spoken, and in Africa the official language is French due to colonization.
Latino migration to the United States
Beginning with the Second Civil War, workers from Latin America (countries on the American continent with Spanish as the official language) began to migrate to the United States . This shows that there are different types of acculturation, from assimilation to cultural separation, since it has been accompanied by the persistence of the cultures of origin. However, the children of these migrant workers often fully integrate into the new culture.
Change in the type of clothing
Another very obvious example of acculturation is the change in the type of clothing, used in multiple countries that have a culture very different from that worn in the West. There are many individuals who choose to leave behind the typical clothing of their culture and choose to start dressing in a totally different way by following Western customs.
Change of accent and use of foreign words
There are people who move to another country and settle there for a long time, so acculturation can be manifested by the use of different words, even if they speak the same language.
A clear example is the word swimming pool, which is used in this way in Spain while in Argentina it is known as pool. Spanglish spoken in Puerto Rico can also be used as an example, as it has 2 official languages.
Other examples of acculturation
- African-American immigrants to the United States.
- Syrian refugees looking for an opportunity in European countries.
- The indigenous people who adopted the Catholic religion .
- Latino students who choose to work in China.