The unprecedented wave of immigrants relocating to western societies makes this a propitious time for interdisciplinary research to focus on identity negotiation. Studies in multicultural contexts offer fascinating insights into the complexities of human interaction, revealing that – irrespective of age – dynamic remodelling of identity still occurs (Blackledge & Pavlenko, 2001; Giguère, Lalonde, & Lou, 2010; Mahtani, 2002). The transitional processes of acculturation in Australia from the sixties onwards provide compelling evidence that our social interactions are in stark contrast with those within our cultural group. Placed in relief with the host national group, the perceptions of self, derived from these interactions thus give rise to the dynamic negotiation of our identity. The traumatised childhood of young migrants whose identity was transformed through ‘intercultural mirrors’ projecting racism and discrimination can leave residual effects on intimate adult relationships. This chapter explores the impacts of the quixotic images projected from online dating through the lens of a fifty-something, Franco-Australian professional, Coco. Her ethnographic chronicle and introspection place her identity reconstruction through intercultural contact with her suitors under the microscope,1 and documents simultaneously how those mirrors are effecting dynamic changes to sociocultural norms.
This book aims to identify key factors influencing the increasing brain drain of French early and mid-career graduates primarily to Anglo-Saxon countries in order to avoid the inexorable outcome of their tertiary studies: precarious employment conditions relegating them to the status of intellectual underclass in France. This qualitative ethnographic study investigated the experiences of 38 French nationals and expatriates aged between 21 and 48 to provide a voice to the increasing number of students and graduates who despair at the thought of witnessing their years of study culminate in a perennial cycle of training, unemployment, internship. What distinguishes the French from their European counterparts who also struggle to secure employment and a decent future? These unprecedented circumstances in Europe are as a result of the global financial crisis and the current sovereign debt predicament. Who is responsible for the quandary in which French graduates find themselves in the stratified French society of today, where globalisation has made academic mobility de rigueur? France risks losing her talented Generation X to more accepting countries where a spirit of meritocracy exists and economic rewards are awarded after years of tertiary education and assiduousness. A large number of constituents belonging to Baby Boomer Generation are ensconced in comfortable government positions or are established in lucrative careers reserved for the upper echelons of the privileged classes. Are the Baby Boomers to blame for the predicament of Generation X, for failing to transmit intergenerational equality to subsequent generations? Will the new government deliver on the promises to grant France’s youth the economic rewards they deserve, and the respect and equality that the previous generation have taken for granted?