This narrative inquiry study, guided by a research puzzle, aimed at understanding how Puerto Rican female citizen-soldiers explain the value congruence between personal/Puerto Rican values (as Puerto Rican citizens) and organizational values (as U.S. Army soldiers) during their lived acculturation experience. The value congruence (consonance and contention) phenomenon within the acculturation process plays a significant role as the U.S. Army is trying to bolster citizen-soldier recruitment, increasing retention and minimizing attrition. The data collected through semi-structured interviews, as conveyed by 10 Puerto Rican female citizen-soldiers, generated the narratives and voices that deliver the insights into how they learned and developed their personal/Puerto Rican values and the U.S. Army organizational values, and how these sets of value systems were either in consonance or contention during their lived acculturation experiences.
The resulting co-composed narratives led to four “resonant threads:” identity and being (meaning); personal determination, strength, and courage (I can do this!) – opportunities and challenges; selflessness and the desire to serve and help others and make a difference; and impact of language (English language proficiency and Puerto Rican accent) on the participant's acculturation experience. Five central findings that provided “clues” to the research puzzle were uncovered: values (personal, Puerto Rican, and U.S. Army) play a meaningful and significant role in the Puerto Rican female Citizen-Soldiers’ lived acculturation experience from the Puerto Rican culture (heritage culture) to the U.S. Army culture (host culture); consonance is the predominant value congruence explanation offered by the Puerto Rican female Citizen-Soldiers during their lived acculturation experiences; integration is the primary acculturation strategy employed by the Puerto Rican female Citizen-Soldiers as they acculturate from the Puerto Rican culture (heritage culture) to the US Army culture (host culture); the Puerto Rican accent and the English language proficiency play a noteworthy dynamic in the Puerto Rican female Citizen-Soldiers’ lived acculturation experience; and Puerto Rican female citizen-soldiers’ reasons for joining, staying, and leaving the U.S. Army are varied, diverse, and progressive. Recommendations and implications for theory, research, and practice are provided and discussed.
Keywords: Values, Value congruence, Acculturation, Puerto Rican women in the U.S. Army, Narrative inquiry
|Advisor:||Casey, Andrea J|
|Commitee:||Blancero, Donna Maria, Zoppi Rodriguez, Irene M|
|School:||The George Washington University|
|Department:||Human & Organizational Learning|
|School Location:||United States -- District of Columbia|
|Source:||DAI-A 81/8(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Military studies, Latin American Studies|
|Keywords:||Acculturation, Narrative inquiry, Puerto Rican women in the U.S. Army, Value congruence, Values|
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