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    Thread: undergraduate dissertation on nationality - looking for ideas from expats


    1. #1

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      sophresearch is on a distinguished road

      Smile undergraduate dissertation on nationality - looking for ideas from expats

      Dear All,

      I am currently a second-year geography undergraduate at Cambridge University in the UK. I am going to Hong Kong in August, in order to conduct research for my final year dissertation. I am intending to focus my research on expatriates in Hong Kong, looking at the ways in which national identity is retained, both at home, in social groups, through international schools etc.

      I am attempting to find out whether the importance of a national identity is gradually being diminished for those living and working away from their country of origin, or whether nationality remains a central part of people’s daily lives.

      I was just wondering if I could get some initial thoughts on this (from expats in Hong Kong or anywhere else in Asia), so I can think about how I will structure my ideas and research.

      1. As an expat, do you consider yourself and/or your children to be ‘global citizens’ or ‘global nomads’? Or do you consider that your distinct national identity remains important whilst living in a different country?

      2. How is your nationality reinforced in your daily life? (i.e. through your social activities, the friends you have, the food you eat?)

      3. Do you socialise mostly with British people?

      Thank you very much for your help! It would be very useful to get a few ideas of the directions my research might take.

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    3. #2

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      Quote Originally Posted by sophresearch View Post
      Dear All,

      1. As an expat, do you consider yourself and/or your children to be ‘global citizens’ or ‘global nomads’? Or do you consider that your distinct national identity remains important whilst living in a different country?

      2. How is your nationality reinforced in your daily life? (i.e. through your social activities, the friends you have, the food you eat?)

      3. Do you socialise mostly with British people?

      Thank you very much for your help! It would be very useful to get a few ideas of the directions my research might take.
      1. I consider myself to have a unique national identity but appreciate i am in a foreign country and do not expect it to cater to my needs.

      2. I am the only English person working with 6 others (all Spanish), Our boss is English and the buyer of the house we are working on is also English.
      My nationality is not really "reinforced" in my daily life

      3. I socialise with anyone who will socialise with me. I have a drink after work with my Spanish work mates, my drinking buddy is English, Our friends are Swedish, Spanish, German, English (equally). The pubs i frequent are equally English bars (but with multinational clientèle) Spanish bars (beach and tapas bars).

      happy to answer any more questions. Good luck with your dissertation.
      it happens a lot everywhere in the world...

    4. #3

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      hi there,
      i've been in China for over 5 years now. I used to write a 'blog' type letter home to my friends, full of quirky observations and anecdotes. i've still got them saved somewhere if you think these might be of use to you?.......all in Word format.
      Ktee likes this.

    5. #4
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      Although I have Australian Citizenship, I am English and a lot of my traditions come from being brought up in that environment. My children are considered Australian by their friends, peers and teachers, one of my daughters teachers for example has taught her for the last 4 years and is from the same part of England my daughter was born but never realised that she was English. My children know that they are English because of birth but feel more Australian. Our food has always been influenced by our travels and isn't predominently 'English/Australian'

      My husband and I work with a lot of different nationalities, so our difference is reinforced rather than a national identity

      Our closest friends as a couple are mainly British, but we also have different social circles which incorporate other nationalities - my childrens friends are a mixture of English, Australian, Korean, Chinese, Malaysian and Indian
      The only people you need in your life are the ones that prove they need you in theirs

    6. #5

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      Quote Originally Posted by Nezzle View Post
      hi there,
      i've been in China for over 5 years now. I used to write a 'blog' type letter home to my friends, full of quirky observations and anecdotes. i've still got them saved somewhere if you think these might be of use to you?.......all in Word format.
      Hi Nezzle, welcome to Brits Abroad. How is life in China?