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Ruth Hill Useem (31 May 1915 – 10 September 2003) was a sociologist who introduced the concept of Third Culture Kid (TCK) to describe children who spent part of their developmental years in a foreign culture due to their parents' working abroad. Her work was the first to identify common themes among various TCK's that affect them throughout their lives. After her retirement in 1985, Dr Useem focused her research on Adult Third Culture Kids (ATCKs).

Third Culture Kids include military brats, missionary kids, diplomatic kids, business kids and "other". Scores of books have been written on Third Culture Kids, "Global Nomads", and military brats based upon the concept originally proposed and defined by Dr. Useem.

Ruth Useem graduated with a PhD in sociology and anthropology from the University of Wisconsin in 1947. She taught at the University of Michigan from 1952 to 1985.


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