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Re: Definition of Third-Generation

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  • J. Metcalfe
    Hi Everyone, I think most of the results to my original post on this topic are now in, so I thought I d give a summary. The term is really open to a number
    Message 1 of 4 , Feb 28, 2007
      Hi Everyone,
      I think most of the "results" to my original post on this topic are now in, so I thought I'd give a summary.  The term is really open to a number of different interpretations.  The most popular response was (b); Items (a) and (c) were chosen more infrequently, but each an equal number of times.  Several people interjected ideas that I hadn't previously considered.  Item (c) was worded improperly - we all, of course, have 4 grandparents.  I apologize for that and, hopefully, my error didn't skew the results too much.
      Option (a) was a definition used by Stats Canada in a recent Ethnic Diversity Survey.  It's kind of tricky, but it's major difference is that it considers the immigrant to constitute the "first-generation."  My initial reaction was that I defined "third-generation" differently than they did and that this would affect how I interpreted the reports based on study of the EDS.  This poll, along with discussions on the Rootsweb message boards and elsewhere on the web about "Who's on First?" show that there is a considerable split of opinion on the issue and that there really is no definitive understanding of the term - although we all tend to use it (perhaps somewhat casually).
      If anyone wants to keep the discussion going, I won't mind in the least ;0)
      Thank you all for responding.

      "J. Metcalfe" <roots938@...> wrote:
      Hi Everyone,
      I am working on a term paper for university and need a consensus on the specific genealogical definition of "third-generation" when it is used, for example, to say "I am third-generation _________" (e.g. Canadian, English, French, Ukrainian, etc.). 
      Does it mean that:
      a) both of a person's parents were born in the reference country, or
      b) at least one parent and one grandparent were born in the reference country, or
      c) both grandparents were born in the reference country, or
      d) something else entirely (please elaborate).
      I would like to get as many responses as possible, since individual impressions of what the term means are as important to my paper discussion as the formal definition (which I also haven't been able to find in the dictionary - only something about computer technology - go figure ;0)
      Thank you,
      Joyce Metcalfe

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