Caribbean Journal of Psychology: Vol. 6, Issue 1, 2014

Article 1
Afro-Caribbean People in China: Away from Home and at Home with Self

C. Jama Adams
John Jay College of Criminal Justice, City University of New York


Migration, both involuntary and voluntary, is one of the defining characteristics of the peoples of the Caribbean. Historically the traditions of storytelling, oral and written, have been used to convey a sense of the psychological dimensions of Caribbean migration. There is however a dearth of formal research on the subjectivities of Afro-Caribbean migrants. The current paper melds first persons’ narratives with psychological theories to present a preliminary exploration of the reflective and self-improvement activities of Afro-Caribbean migrants in mainland China. Thirteen Afro- Caribbean migrants participated in semi-structured interviews. Results indicated that successful migrants were able to maintain a stance of adaptive ambivalence that allows them to integrate features of both cultures to promote self-development within the contexts of varied constraints. Limitations and suggestions for future research are discussed in the conclusion.