The Effect of Acculturation and Immigration on the Victimization and Psychological Distress Link in a National Sample of Latino Women

Carlos A. Cuevas, Chiara Sabina, Kristin A. Bell

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Abstract

Distinct bodies of research have examined the link between victimization and psychological distress and cultural variables and psychological health, but little is known about how cultural variables affect psychological distress among Latino victims. Substantial research has concluded that Latino women are more likely than non-Latino women to experience trauma-related symptoms following victimization. In addition, examination of different types of cultural adaptation has found results supporting the idea that maintaining ties with one's culture of origin may be protective against negative mental health outcomes. The present study evaluates the effect of victimization, immigrant status, and both Anglo and Latino orientation on psychological distress in a national sample of Latino women. Results indicate that along with the total count of victimization experiences, Anglo and/or Latino orientation were strong predictors of all forms of psychological distress. Anglo orientation also functioned as a moderator between victimization and psychological distress measures for anger, dissociation, and anxiety. The results suggest a more nuanced and complex interaction between cultural factors, victimization, and psychological distress.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1428-1456
Number of pages29
JournalJournal of Interpersonal Violence
Volume27
Issue number8
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - May 1 2012

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All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Applied Psychology

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