Cultural Socialization in Families With Adopted Korean Adolescents: A Mixed-Method, Multi-informant Study

Oh Myo Kim, Reed Reichwald, Richard Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

50 Scopus citations


Transracial, transnational families understand and transmit cultural socialization messages in ways that differ from same-race families. This study explores the ways in which transracial, transnational adoptive families discuss race and ethnicity and how these family discussions compare to self-reports from adoptive parents and adolescents regarding the level of parental engagement in cultural socialization. Of the 30 families with at least one adolescent-aged child (60% of the participants were female; average age across the sample was 17.8 years) who was adopted from South Korea, 9 families acknowledge racial and ethnic differences, 6 reject racial and ethnic differences, and 15 hold a discrepancy of views. Parents also report significantly greater engagement in cultural socialization compared to that revealed in adolescents' reports of parental engagement. However, only adolescent self-reports of parental engagement in cultural socialization match the qualitative coding of family conversations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)69-95
Number of pages27
JournalJournal of Adolescent Research
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2013

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The author(s) disclosed receipt of the following financial support for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article: The research was supported in part by a NIMH K-01 award (MH070740) to Richard M Lee, and in part by USPHS Grants (Grant Number AA11886 and Grant Number MH066140) awarded to Matt McGue.


  • Asians/Asian Americans
  • ethnic issues
  • family relationships
  • identity issues
  • parenting


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