Religious Life of Russian Immigrants in Finland

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Title: Religious Life of Russian Immigrants in Finland
Author: Sevieva, Anastasia
Other contributor: Helsingin yliopisto, Teologinen tiedekunta
University of Helsinki, Faculty of Theology
Helsingfors universitet, Teologiska fakulteten
Publisher: Helsingin yliopisto
Date: 2019
Language: eng
Thesis level: master's thesis
Discipline: Religion, Conflict and Dialogue
Religion, Conflict and Dialogue
Religion, Conflict and Dialogue
Abstract: Russian immigrants are one of the biggest ethnic minorities in Finland. Most of them moved to country during last 30 years. Russian community live peaceful open life, building connections to Finnish society through marriages, work communications, social projects, cultural integration. However, like any other immigrants all over the world they face many challenges of new life circumstances, for example, difficult local language, prejudices in the society, unemployment, stress, feeling of loneliness. After analysing the previous research, I saw that Russian immigrants as a group is understudied. The aim of my thesis work was to collect and analyse new data on religious life of Russian immigrants in Finland and find out if a church/ mosque/ other religious organisation can provide support for immigrants. Twenty-five interviews were conducted in spring and autumn of 2018. I met twenty of the respondents in person and taped our conversations. Five respondents were able to answer my questions in written form. Interviews were conducted in Russian language and included forty questions. The target group of the research were Russian immigrants (20-30), who moved to Finland during last three-five years. The research method my worked is based on was conducting the interviews and analysing their outcomes. I used simple tables system, filling them with simplified short version of replies. I applied coding and scoring method. I also explored relevant literature (books, reports, articles, etc.), statistic data and previous researches. My thesis work includes Introduction, six chapters, Conclusion, Bibliography and Appendix. I referred to the theory of professor John Berry on four stages of acculturation, to the theory of seven stages of assimilation by American sociologist Milton Gordon, to the studies of Professor of University of Oslo Pål Kolstø who investigated Russian diasporas in different countries, and to the previous researches in the sphere. I present my research findings and analysis and also refer to the extra interviews I conducted during my research. In the Conclusion part of my thesis I present the key findings of my research and formulate some recommendations to the religious organisations upon the work with Russian immigrants.
Subject: Russian immigrants
Russian diaspora
religion and immigration

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