“Another Kind of Swede”: Swedish Youth’s Ethnic Identity Narratives

Fanny Gyberg, Ann Frisén, Moin Syed, Maria Wängqvist, Ylva Svensson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


The purpose of this study was to use a narrative approach to investigate the types of ethnicity-related experiences (i.e., ethnic identity content) that were prevalent in the lives of young people in Sweden and to examine if these types of experiences differed due to immigrant status, self-identified ethnicity, or age-groups. Ninety-five participants (87% women, 66% immigrants; 57% emerging adults, 43% adolescents; Mage = 19.62) shared their ethnicity-related experiences. Results indicated that youth from immigrant backgrounds more often wrote about ethnicity-related experiences. Thematic analysis revealed six types of stories: feelings of prejudice or racism, general differences, not fitting in, being “another kind of Swede,” being in between cultures or ethnicities, and cultural ideologies. These themes showed little variation by participant immigrant background, ethnicity, or age. The themes found in this study reflect complex and multicultural identities that may play an important part in young people’s identity formation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)17-31
Number of pages15
JournalEmerging Adulthood
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 1 2018

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors disclosed receipt of the following financial support for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article: Preparation of this manuscript was supported by an Innovative Small Grant from the Society for Research on Adolescence and a University of Minnesota Grant-in-Aid, both awarded to Moin Syed.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2017, © 2017 Society for the Study of Emerging Adulthood and SAGE Publishing.


  • Sweden
  • adolescents
  • emerging adults
  • ethnic identity
  • narrative


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