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The Psychological Cost of Immigration

April 25, 2008

The following essay shows several reasons WHY many Euro-Americans are feeling depressed about the changes in their homeland caused by relentless waves of alien immigration. We’re losing our home to aliens!

Solastalgia and the Psychological Cost of Immigration

Solastalgia and the Psychological Cost of Immigration

The flood of non-white immigration in the United States, Europe, Australia, and other white nations has, and continues to have, an erosive effect on white communities. Immigrants who are in the out-group relative to the majority population move into neighborhoods and rapidly alter the social landscape.

by Evan Anderson
Solastalgia is a relatively new concept created by Australian philosopher Glenn Albrecht and first published the journal PAN in 2005 (1). It is defined as “the pain or distress caused by the loss of, or inability to derive, solace connected to the negatively percieved state of one’s home environment”. In other words solastalgia is a type of ‘homesickness’ that occurs while one is still at home. Rapid and radical changes to the home environment turn it into something unrecognizable and can induce a sort of distress similar to that experienced by refugees from war. Albrecht writes that the “dominant components of solastalgia” include “the loss of ecosystem health and corresponding sense of place, threats to personal health and wellbeing and a sense of injustice and/or powerlessness”. (2)
Solastalgia is classified as a psychoterratic illness, or one in which environmental damage is associated with mental distress.
Research demonstrates a profound impact on mental health and sense of well-being in those who suffer profound changes in their home environments. In one case, people living in New South Wales, Australia struggled to deal with the effects of expanded coal mining and power industries. Those interviewed complained about the unsightliness of the environmental devastation and the declining property values of the land they had occupied for generations (2).

As useful as Albrecht’s notion of solastalgia is, his writing focuses almost exclusively on the effects of damage to the physical world. However, the home environment consists of much more than just trees, fields, and buildings. As Aristotle first remarked, man is a social animal. People live in a webs of social interaction and interpersonal relationships, or communities. They find comfort and solace in family, friends, civic and religious organizations, and even in just seeing familiar faces at the neighborhood grocery store. Damage to this community structure can cause at least as much psychological harm as damage to the physical environment.

To get a sense of how community might be disrupted let us take a closer look at how it is defined. German sociologist Ferdinand Tönnies (1855 – 1936) made a useful distinction between two types of social environment (3). On the one hand is society (Gesellschaft) or groups formed on the basis of an instrumental goal. Examples might be companies, unions, or political organizations. For the most part societies are a modern phenomenon and tend to be rather fluid – breaking apart and reorganizing as goals change. Tonnies’ community (Gemeinschaft), on the other hand, refers to family and neighborhood bonds that result in feelings of cohesion and togetherness. These are natural groupings based on an underlying, often subconscious, “essential will”. The sense of community is not created or ‘imagined’, but innate, and is largely a consequence of biological kinship and genetic similarity.
More recent research on community psychology has identified four basic elements involved in the ‘sense of community’; membership, influence, integration and need fulfillment, and shared emotional connection (4, 6). The first, membership, deals with who belongs to the community and who does not. Factors such as language, dress, ritual, common symbol systems, and most importantly race, all serve to differentiate mbmers of the in-group from those of the out-group. Those within the community share a sense of emotional safety, sense of belonging, and personal investment.

Members also feel as if they have some influence over what happens in their community. They belive that they have a voice and that their opinion matters. Likewise they are comfortable with the influence that their community has over them. There is a sense of trust that their interests are being looked after.

Finally, members of a true community feel integrated into the social framework and have a shared emotional connection with those around them. They have a personal investment in the community and feel they will be rewarded for civic participation. In the context of the community honor and shame still have meaning and the power to influence a person’s behavior.

The flood of non-white immigration in the United States, Europe, Australia, and other white nations has, and continues to have, an erosive effect on white communities. Immigrants who are in the out-group relative to the majority population move into neighborhoods and rapidly alter the social landscape. Days at school, trips to the store, or nights out on the weekend no longer become community-affirming experiences but are filled with language barriers, fear, and a palpable tension. These feelings manifest themselves in the well-known phenomenon of ‘white flight’. As the non-white population of an area increases, whites tend to move out of the area in an attempt to join or build racially homogenous communities elsewhere. But in both the United States and Europe, whites are running out of places to go.

Even liberal sociologist Robert Putnam discovered a reduction in ‘social capital’ in areas that were more ethnically diverse (5). Social capital includes such things as security, community involvement, and use of shared community facilities. He found that the more racially diverse an area the more the residents (of all races) tended to mistrust others and sequester themselves. Immigration is creating this sort of situation in all white nations. Solastalgia may prove a useful concept in describing the psychological impact this has on individuals in those nations.

Comments

5 Responses to “The Psychological Cost of Immigration”

  1. Glenn Albrecht on April 26th, 2008 8:32 pm

    As the creator of the concept of solastalgia I cannot , unfortunately, stop people from using my idea in inappropriate contexts.

    However, as the son of a father born in Ceyon who migrated to Australia in the 1940s, I find the attempt to connect racism with community structure via solastalgia particularly offensive.

    The division of the world into white and non-white is based on irrationality and paranoia generated by racism (discrimination against people based soley on the colour of their skin).

    Such dangerous nonsense has no justification and certainly has no connection to solastalgia.

  2. admin on April 26th, 2008 11:12 pm

    Hi Glenn,

    Thanks for writing. I’ve only skimmed here (Sat night), but what do you propose is the appropriate context? What is your answer to the phenomenon?

    Of course you’re offended. If your father came from Ceyon to Australia, it would make his moving there part of the destruction you speak of in your theory. Multiculturalism speaks to the heart of societal destruction.

    In our country (the U.S.), we have many groups fighting for political interests based on their race. Indeed, La Raza (“the race”) is a pro-Meztizo organization who is partially funded by what is supposed to be the conservative party’s national office. We’re simply doing the same thing, but for ordinary Whites.

    Race is not about the color of one’s skin. Itz self-evident. You say it’s “dangerous nonsense,” but things are only dangerous to the extent to which they are true. If we cited your work as “proof” that the Earth was flat, you would not call that dangerous for exactly this reason.

  3. Glenn Albrecht on April 27th, 2008 4:00 am

    I have no answer to crude racism other than its rejection by people of reason and moral integrity.

    If multiculturalism speaks to” the heart of social destruction” then why don’t you apply the same thinking to those, like you and your ancestors, who have migrated to America from other parts of the world and displaced Native Americans?

    Given that in your view I am a product of multiculturalism it seems strange to me that you would find anything of value in a concept developed by someone who is not an “ordinary white”. Or perhaps your willingness to use other people’s ideas is independent of their ethnic/racial origins? If so, then ….

    You say that race is not about color of skin … so why do you persist in using terms such as “white” in relation to human beings? Are you trying to provide a defence of Western, Eurocentric culture? If so, you had better look closely at the multicultural origins of the Europeans!

    As for your point about skin color, the logic defies me. I argued that discrimination on the basis of skin color is dangerous nonsense. It is dangerous because discrimination based on such an irrelevant human characteristic has been used to justify slavery and genocide when there are no grounds, empirical or moral, for such discrimination. You may as well discriminate on the basis of nose size or arm length … other equally irrelevant human characteristics. There is no “voice of reason” here … just very confused thinking. It is for this reason that I object to your use of my concept of solastalgia.

    As for your flat earth argument, it is also simply poor reasoning. As with racism, there is no empirical or moral evidence for a flat earth. If you were so lacking in reason that you used the concept of ‘solastalgia’ to support such an erroneous idea, that too would be erroneous. Such reasoning error would become “dangerous nonsense” if it was then to be used to persecute or discriminate against certain types of people, e.g., those who argue, with solid evidence, that the earth is round.

    It is not the extent to which things are true that creates dangerous thinking and immoral outcomes such as genocide; it is the lack of reason and ethics in the application and use of concepts that is most likely to cause such an outcome.

    Your use of solastalgia to support racism is dangerous nonsense because you want the connection to support your “whites” only view of the world. As I said above, I totally reject such a connection and find your particular use of my concept without foundation in reason or ethics.

  4. katman on April 27th, 2008 1:53 pm

    Glenn, may I ask you who invented the term ‘racism’?

    once you find out the answer to that question, then you will understand what we are dealing with here. I dare say sir, that are you absolutely sure that the white european displaced the american indian in the area of the united states? I can tell you this. There have been incidences of people finding bones here and there in the states, that are older than any known american indian artifacts and these were the bones of white men. so i ask you? who displaced who? The white man is at the crux of the argument for you see, it is he and he alone that is able to withstand the jew and the jew knows this. this is why the jew is doing what he is doing now. anything to destroy the white race by any means necessary. now having said that, does it mean that I as a white man harbors hate for other races in my heart? nope, God forbid. but for me, it is only a journey to truth that is allowing me to say these things that i say. for you see ,for me, it has been a long strange trip. i was once blind but now i see. i was lost but now i am found. to know that the war against my race is ongoing on in full operation now. is not somehow a bad thing for other races. for you see. other races are used as battering rams so to speak, against the white race. we are made to argue and hate each other , and alll the while the real enemies of mankind laugh at the dumb goyim. fools we are and fools we will always be until we understand that the enemy is not among ourselves based soley on race. our hatreds of each other are made for us and then thrust upon us by one race, the jew, who uses this as a convenient distraction so that we all may not understand who the real enemy is. think about this. if the jew was not among us doing these things, just what exactly would be happening? well there would be seperation of the races of course because that is natural and is healthy. and conflicts would be few and far between because there would be no hunger and with a strong financial system there would be rich and there would be poor and the churches would encourage those who have to help out those who do not, as it was supposed to be and as it has been since the inception of mankind. would such a world be perfect? of course not. but compare to what we have now. everything you see happening now has been created by the jew for his own needs, his own purposes and his own aims. jews are a state within a state and are only loyal to themselves. we as a people must understand this and deal with it. there is no easy answer. but if we wait much longer it will be too late and perhaps that line in the sand has already been crossed and all of this talk and all of this discussion and all of this pontificating is a waste of bandwidth. for too long , as peter shank says, we have undertaken wishful thinking. and where may i ask ,has this gotten us? to where we are today. sitting at the crossroads as a country and a race.

  5. admin on April 27th, 2008 11:29 pm

    Glenn Albrecht on April 27th, 2008 4:00 am
    I have no answer to crude racism other than its rejection by people of reason and moral integrity.

    Hi Glenn, thanks for responding. In other words, you would’ve been another one of the plebs cheering on as “witches” were burned, and as the church jailed scientists who dared to question the accepted wisdom of their time. After all, you would’ve called the Pope a person a reason and moral integrity. What an incredibly slavish world-view! Forgive me, but I would think that a person who is referred to as a “philosopher,” as you are in this article, would be able to come to terms with these issues on his own without relying merely on the “accepted wisdom” (read: enforced dogma) of the day. Often enough, philosophy requires of thinking adults the courage to question everything, including the prevailing dogmas.

    If multiculturalism speaks to” the heart of social destruction” then why don’t you apply the same thinking to those, like you and your ancestors, who have migrated to America from other parts of the world and displaced Native Americans?

    Glenn, I’m truly shocked. Can you really do no better than the tired, anti-white guilt trip? If so, you’re going to be as confused as my poor grandmother who couldn’t understand why the TV remote didn’t operate the computer. These tired guilt-trip memes don’t work the way they used to, Glenn. Forget the happenings of half a millennia ago—I am being forced at the back of the line today by quotas which, just as you have done here, base their reasoning on race. I will not feel guilty about fighting back on the basis upon which I am attacked. LOL!

    Given that in your view I am a product of multiculturalism it seems strange to me that you would find anything of value in a concept developed by someone who is not an “ordinary white”.

    Even a broken clock is right twice a day, Glenn.

    Or perhaps your willingness to use other people’s ideas is independent of their ethnic/racial origins? If so, then ….

    You say that race is not about color of skin … so why do you persist in using terms such as “white” in relation to human beings? Are you trying to provide a defence of Western, Eurocentric culture? If so, you had better look closely at the multicultural origins of the Europeans!

    I use “White,” because ordinary Whites understand what I mean when I use the term, and I wish to be read and understood by as many as possible. Sure, I understand that there are light-skinned races who I wouldn’t say were “white,” but neither would anyone else, so the distinction is useful. This meme you attempt to put across that we “hate” because don’t like the color of skin is lazy and dishonest, as if we go around hating a black car or a yellow shirt because we don’t like the colors =] And yes, Europeans are the most diverse people on the planet. That’s why we get the chix.

    It is dangerous because discrimination based on such an irrelevant human characteristic has been used to justify slavery and genocide when there are no grounds, empirical or moral, for such discrimination.

    It is only dangerous to the extent that others will be convinced themselves. Why are you so afraid of people thinking for themselves? If these thoughts are so very naughty, why aren’t you confident that thinking people will see them for the big mean lies that they are? People are better off letting you do the thinking for them, huh Glenn?

    You may as well discriminate on the basis of nose size or arm length … other equally irrelevant human characteristics.

    Not so fast. I would agree that it would be rather difficult to, say, put people into categories of “big noses” and “small noses,” then win any sort of wager that proffered, say, that the small nosed folks would have a statistically significant higher rate of crime. However, I can do this with skin color. In fact, I would be willing to wager with you my side against yours, with data drawn from the US Department of Justice crime statistics. Do you dare to allow reality to test this belief of yours?

    There is no “voice of reason” here … just very confused thinking.

    Great, so you will take me up on my challenge?

    It is for this reason that I object to your use of my concept of solastalgia.

    Are you normally so contemptuous of those who are “confused?” Do you visit mental wards to make sure no one is citing your work? Glenn, I’m not just trying to be silly here, but I’m proving the point that you wouldn’t give a darn about us if we were as confused as you claim we are, but indeed you fear us exactly because here exists a credible threat to your communistic, multi-cult dogma.

    As for your flat earth argument, it is also simply poor reasoning. As with racism, there is no empirical or moral evidence for a flat earth.

    Wrong. See me after class. :]

    MORAL EVIDENCE: That evidence which is not obtained either from intuition or demonstration. It consists of those convictions of the mind, which are produced by the use of the senses, the testimony of men, and analogy or induction. It is used in contradistinction to mathematical, evidence. (q.v.) 3 Bouv. Inst. n. 3050.

    I think I’ll stick with the mathematical reality where I can get it. Articles of faith supposedly went out with The Enlightenment. You’ve merely switched one dogma for another.

    If you were so lacking in reason that you used the concept of ‘solastalgia’ to support such an erroneous idea, that too would be erroneous. Such reasoning error would become “dangerous nonsense” if it was then to be used to persecute or discriminate against certain types of people, e.g., those who argue, with solid evidence, that the earth is round.

    Yes, but would you worry so much if “flat-earthers” were poisecuting “round-earthers?” And how would they do it?

    It is not the extent to which things are true that creates dangerous thinking and immoral outcomes such as genocide; it is the lack of reason and ethics in the application and use of concepts that is most likely to cause such an outcome.

    Then, you’ll take me up on my wager then?

    Your use of solastalgia to support racism is dangerous nonsense because you want the connection to support your “whites” only view of the world. As I said above, I totally reject such a connection and find your particular use of my concept without foundation in reason or ethics.

    I didn’t use it. Read more carefully. My view isn’t “Whites only,” only Whites first. I live in a multicultural mud-mélange, and the other races are agitating for special rights and set-asides on the basis of their race, and I can only laugh at your objection that I do the same. I’m White, and I agitate for White rights. You’re going to have to accept it, Glenn, since there are millions more just like us who are ready to rebel against the prevailing dogmas of our time, just as generations before us. You may as well demand that we stop dancing or listening to rock-and-roll. =]

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