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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Coping strategy and resource use : an analysis of the Japanese Canadian internment during the Second World War Deyell, Stewart Toru


During the Second World War, more than 22,000 Japanese Canadians were interned to various locations throughout Canada. While more than 60 years have passed since these events, there remains limited research on the impact that this event had on this group of people. Using McCubbin and Patterson’s (1983) Double ABCX model of family stress and adaptation as a framework, this study used historical narratives of 69 Japanese Canadians to gain insight into a) how Japanese Canadians coped with the challenges associated with their internment, and b) what resources they used during this same time period. The analysis of the coping strategies was done using a modified version of existing measures of coping strategies (Folkman, Lazarus, Dunkel-Schetter, DeLongis, & Gruen, 1986; Suedfeld, Krell, Wiebe, & Steel, 1997), and the analysis of resources was done using an adjusted version of Rettig’s (1995) and Tucker and Rice’s (1985) resource classification list. There were no statistically significant differences between Japanese Canadian men and women in their coping strategy use, but that there were differences between the Issei (first generation) and Nisei (second generation). The Issei used Self Control, Positive Reappraisal, and Denail more than the Nisei, while the Nisei used Seeking Social Support more than the Issei. A strong relationship between coping and resources was found; a relationship that has often been assumed, but never tested. The findings from this study also provided additional support for the usefulness of using both narratives and the Double ABCX model in research.

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