Immigration and the Remaking of Black America

Russell Sage Foundation
Free sample

Over the last four decades, immigration from the Caribbean and sub-Saharan Africa to the U. S. has increased rapidly. In several states, African immigrants are now major drivers of growth in the black population. While social scientists and commentators have noted that these black immigrants’ social and economic outcomes often differ from those of their native-born counterparts, few studies have carefully analyzed the mechanisms that produce these disparities. In Immigration and the Remaking of Black America, sociologist and demographer Tod Hamilton shows how immigration is reshaping black America. He weaves together interdisciplinary scholarship with new data to enhance our understanding of the causes of socioeconomic stratification among both the native-born and newcomers.

Hamilton demonstrates that immigration from the Caribbean and sub-Saharan Africa is driven by selective migration, meaning that newcomers from these countries tend to have higher educational attainment than those who stay behind. As a result, they arrive in the U.S. with some advantages over native-born blacks, and, in some cases, over whites. He also shows the importance of historical context: prior to the Civil Rights Movement, black immigrants’ socioeconomic outcomes resembled native-born blacks’ much more closely, regardless of their educational attainment in their country of origin. Today, however, certain groups of black immigrants have better outcomes than native-born black Americans—such as lower unemployment rates and higher rates of homeownership—in part because they immigrated at a time of expanding opportunities for minorities and women in general. Hamilton further finds that rates of marriage and labor force participation among native-born blacks that move away from their birth states resemble those of many black immigrants, suggesting that some disparities within the black population stem from processes associated with migration, rather than from nativity alone.

Hamilton argues that failing to account for this diversity among the black population can lead to incorrect estimates of the social progress made by black Americans and the persistence of racism and discrimination. He calls for future research on racial inequality to disaggregate different black populations. By richly detailing the changing nature of black America, Immigration and the Remaking of Black America helps scholars and policymakers to better understand the complexity of racial disparities in the twenty-first century.

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About the author

Tod G. Hamilton is assistant professor of sociology and a faculty associate of the Office of Population Research at Princeton University.
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Additional Information

Publisher
Russell Sage Foundation
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Published on
May 15, 2019
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Pages
313
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ISBN
9781610448857
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Language
English
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Genres
Social Science / Demography
Social Science / Emigration & Immigration
Social Science / Ethnic Studies / African American Studies
Social Science / General
Social Science / Sociology / General
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This content is DRM protected.
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The American dream of equal opportunity and social mobility still holds a powerful appeal for the many immigrants who arrive in this country each year. but if immigrant success stories symbolize the fulfillment of the American dream, the persistent inequality suffered by native-born African Americans demonstrates the dream's limits. Although the experience of blacks and immigrants in the United States are not directly comparable, their fates are connected in ways that are seldom recognized. Immigration and Opportunity brings together leading sociologists and demographers to present a systematic account of the many ways in which immigration affects the labor market experiences of native-born African Americans. With the arrival of large numbers of nonwhite immigrants in recent decades, blacks now represent less than 50 percent of the U.S. minority population. Immigration and Opportunity reveals how immigration has transformed relations between minority populations in the United States, creating new forms of labor market competition between native and immigrant minorities. Recent immigrants have concentrated in a handful of port-of-entry cities, breaking up established patterns of residential segregation,and, in some cases, contributing to the migration of native blacks out of these cities. Immigrants have secured many of the occupational niches once dominated by blacks and now pass these jobs on through ethnic hiring networks that exclude natives. At the same time, many native-born blacks find jobs in the public sector, which is closed to those immigrants who lack U.S. citizenship. While recent immigrants have unquestionably brought economic and cultural benefits to U.S. society, this volume makes it clear that the costs of increased immigration falls particularly heavily upon those native-born groups who are already disadvantaged. Even as large-scale immigration transforms the racial and ethnic make-up of U.S. society—forcing us to think about race and ethnicity in new ways—it demands that we pay renewed attention to the entrenched problems of racial disadvantage that still beset native-born African Americans.
Beginning in the 1990s, immigrants to the United States increasingly bypassed traditional gateway cites such as Los Angeles and New York to settle in smaller towns and cities throughout the nation. With immigrant communities popping up in so many new places, questions about ethnic diversity and immigrant assimilation confront more and more Americans. New Faces in New Places, edited by distinguished sociologist Douglas Massey, explores today's geography of immigration and examines the ways in which native-born Americans are dealing with their new neighbors. Using the latest census data and other population surveys, New Faces in New Places examines the causes and consequences of the shift toward new immigrant destinations. Contributors Mark Leach and Frank Bean examine the growing demand for low-wage labor and lower housing costs that have attracted many immigrants to move beyond the larger cities. Katharine Donato, Charles Tolbert, Alfred Nucci, and Yukio Kawano report that the majority of Mexican immigrants are no longer single male workers but entire families, who are settling in small towns and creating a surge among some rural populations long in decline. Katherine Fennelly shows how opinions about the growing immigrant population in a small Minnesota town are divided along socioeconomic lines among the local inhabitants. The town's leadership and professional elites focus on immigrant contributions to the economic development and the diversification of the community, while working class residents fear new immigrants will bring crime and an increased tax burden to their communities. Helen Marrow reports that many African Americans in the rural south object to Hispanic immigrants benefiting from affirmative action even though they have just arrived in the United States and never experienced historical discrimination. As Douglas Massey argues in his conclusion, many of the towns profiled in this volume are not equipped with the social and economic institutions to help assimilate new immigrants that are available in the traditional immigrant gateways of New York, Los Angeles, and Chicago. And the continual replenishment of the flow of immigrants may adversely affect the nation's perception of how today's newcomers are assimilating relative to previous waves of immigrants. New Faces in New Places illustrates the many ways that communities across the nation are reacting to the arrival of immigrant newcomers, and suggests that patterns and processes of assimilation in the twenty-first century may be quite different from those of the past. Enriched by perspectives from sociology, anthropology, and geography New Faces in New Places is essential reading for scholars of immigration and all those interested in learning the facts about new faces in new places in America.
The Associated Press calls them "The Entitlement Generation," and they are storming into schools, colleges, and businesses all over the country. They are today's young people, a new generation with sky-high expectations and a need for constant praise and fulfillment. In this provocative new book, headline-making psychologist and social commentator Dr. Jean Twenge documents the self-focus of what she calls "Generation Me" -- people born in the 1970s, 1980s, and 1990s. Herself a member of Generation Me, Dr. Twenge explores why her generation is tolerant, confident, open-minded, and ambitious but also cynical, depressed, lonely, and anxious.

Using findings from the largest intergenerational study ever conducted -- with data from 1.3 million respondents spanning six decades -- Dr. Twenge reveals how profoundly different today's young adults are -- and makes controversial predictions about what the future holds for them and society as a whole. But Dr. Twenge doesn't just talk statistics -- she highlights real-life people and stories and vividly brings to life the hopes and dreams, disappointments and challenges of Generation Me.With a good deal of irony, humor, and sympathy she demonstrates that today's young people have been raised to aim for the stars at a time when it is more difficult than ever to get into college, find a good job, and afford a house -- even with two incomes. GenMe's expectations have been raised just as the world is becoming more competitive, creating an enormous clash between expectations and reality. Dr. Twenge also presents the often-shocking truths about her generation's dramatically different sexual behavior and mores.

GenMe has created a profound shift in the American character, changing what it means to be an individual in today's society. Engaging, controversial, prescriptive, and often funny, Generation Me will give Boomers new insight into their offspring, and help GenMe'ers in their teens, 20s, and 30s finally make sense of themselves and their goals and find their road to happiness.
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