First-Generation Iranian Refugees’ Acculturation in the United States: A Focus on Resilience


Refugees, Iranians, Mass trauma, Resiliency, Acculturation


The purpose of this transcendental phenomenological study was to understand the struggles and strengths of acculturation for first-generation Iranian refugees dealing with mass trauma in the United States, using the family resiliency framework lens. Transcendental phenomenology qualitative research approach developed by Moustakas (Phenomenological research methods, Sage, Thousand Oaks, CA, 1994) interpreted the interviews collected from 10 participants (five males, five females) who were first-generation Iranian refugees in the United States. The four essential themes that emerged from the transcriptions were: (a) Forced to leave home country because of persecution; (b) Culture shock in the U.S.; (c) Acculturation Process; and (d) Strengths and Resiliencies. Results of this study highlighted the importance of acculturation for first-generation Iranian refugees in the United States. It would be helpful for clinicians to be educated and aware of the mass trauma phenomenon that first-generation Iranian refugees experienced when they were forced to leave their home country and started a new life in the United States.

Original Publication Citation

Hormozi, T., Miller, M., Banford Witting, A. (2018). First-generation Iranian refugees’acculturation in the United States: A focus on resiliency. Contemporary Family Therapy. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10591-018-9459-9

Document Type

Peer-Reviewed Article

Publication Date



Contemporary Family Therapy




Family, Home, and Social Sciences


Family Life

University Standing at Time of Publication

Full Professor