Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


The dissertation examines the process of Arab assimilation in Canada. Data was gathered by bilingual (Arabic/English) questionnaires. The author used a multidisciplinary approach to present assimilation as a process of psychosocial spatial transformation.;The contribution of the dissertation is a molecular assimilation model which integrates three parts: spatial interaction, assimilation and identity change. The model parts are totally interrelated allowing for dynamic feedbacks, multicyclic operation and continuous transformation. The application of the model led to a greater appreciation of the molecular and dynamic nature of assimilation.;Assimilation molecularity is recognized by discovering the assimilation molecules: intercultural events. They are the interacting subsystems that combine into an infinity of dynamic combinations/parts: adjustment, acculturation, integration, diffusion...etc. Using the concept of molecularity a new, comprehensive and simple definition is proposed: assimilation is the psychosocial spatial outcome of the aggregate effects of dynamic intercultural events.;Assimilation dynamism is the rule that governs assimilation progression, behaviour, stages, and configuration. Assimilation progression is time-sensitive, uneven and non linear. Assimilation behaviour is variable and multidirectional. Assimilation stages are heterogeneous consisting of dissimilar events. Assimilation configurations are relative not absolute.;Because of its molecular and dynamic characteristics, the model shifts attention from surface appearances (the consequences) to the hidden interacting subsystems: assimilation events (the "molecular" processes). Future assimilation studies may focus on the structural, interactional, temporal, spatial and hierarchial dimensions of the assimilation events. An interdisciplinary team of psychologists, sociologists and geographers may work together to carry out laboratory investigations on the assimilation events. This should be an interesting and rewarding line of inquiry.



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