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New Faces in New Places

New Faces in New Places: The Changing Geography of American Immigration

Copyright Date: 2008
Published by: Russell Sage Foundation
Pages: 384
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    New Faces in New Places
    Book Description:

    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.

    eISBN: 978-1-61044-381-4
    Subjects: Sociology

Table of Contents

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  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-iv)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. v-vi)
  3. About the Authors
    (pp. vii-x)
  4. Chapter 1 Places and Peoples: The New American Mosaic
    (pp. 1-22)
    Charles Hirschman and Douglas S. Massey

    The magnitude and character of recent immigration to the United States, popularly known as the post-1965 wave of immigration, continue to surprise policymakers and many experts. The first surprise was that it happened at all. The 1965 amendments to the Immigration and Nationality Act, also known as the Hart-Celler Law, were a product of the civil rights era of the 1960s. Ending the infamous national-origin quotas enacted in the 1920s—the central objective of the 1965 amendments—was a high priority for members of Congress, many of whom were the children and grandchildren of Southern and Eastern European immigrants who...


    • Chapter 2 The Geographic Diversification of American Immigration
      (pp. 25-50)
      Douglas S. Massey and Chiara Capoferro

      A salient characteristic of immigration throughout the world is its geographic concentration. Immigrants tend not to disperse randomly throughout destination nations, but to move disproportionately to places where people of the same nationality have already settled. To a large extent, this selective channeling of immigrants to specific destination areas reflects the influence of migrant networks (Massey 1985). Because international migration is costly in both monetary and psychic terms, migrants display a strong tendency to draw upon social ties they have with current or former migrants in order to reduce the costs and risks of international movement (Massey et al. 1998)....

    • Chapter 3 The Structure and Dynamics of Mexican Migration to New Destinations in the United States
      (pp. 51-74)
      Mark A. Leach and Frank D. Bean

      During the 1990s Mexican migrants to the United States increasingly spread throughout the country (Johnson 2000; Massey, Durand, and Malone 2002; Passel and Zimmerman 2001; Suro and Passel 2003). Nourished both by international migrants from Mexico and by Mexican-born internal migrants who had previously arrived in the country but had moved away from traditional destinations, communities of Mexican-born persons became increasingly visible, not only in large urban metropolises such as New York and Atlanta but also in small towns throughout the Midwest and South.

      The Mexican-born were no longer concentrating nearly as much as before in the traditional receiving states,...

    • Chapter 4 Changing Faces, Changing Places: The Emergence of New Nonmetropolitan Immigrant Gateways
      (pp. 75-98)
      Katharine M. Donato, Charles Tolbert, Alfred Nucci and Yukio Kawano

      Since 1990, studies have documented the widespread growth of immigrant populations in American communities not known as common destinations in the past. One recent analysis of the changing geography of Mexican immigrants described shifts from traditional destinations in California and Texas to new states such as Colorado, Utah, and Nevada, and to new cities such as New York City, Phoenix, Las Vegas, and Denver (Durand, Massey, and Charvet 2000). Other studies illustrate the breadth of the foreign-born population’s geographic dispersion over the past fifteen years, with new destinations as varied as Dalton, Georgia, a small town well known for its...

    • Chapter 5 New Hispanic Migrant Destinations: A Tale of Two Industries
      (pp. 99-123)
      Emilio A. Parrado and William Kandel

      In the past decade, scholarly attention has focused on Hispanic population growth and immigration to small towns, cities, and regions that traditionally never experienced post–World War II immigration (Gozdziak and Martin 2005; Millard, Chapa, and Burillo 2005; Zúñiga and Hernández-León 2005). Three outcomes are associated with this trend. First, the high volume of immigration has catapulted Hispanics into the largest minority group in the United States, surpassing African Americans. Second, new metropolitan areas of destination, particularly in the American Southeast, emerged as immigrant magnets, competing with traditional destinations in California and Texas. Third, Hispanic population growth is no longer...

    • Chapter 6 The Origins of Employer Demand for Immigrants in a New Destination: The Salience of Soft Skills in a Volatile Economy
      (pp. 124-148)
      Katharine M. Donato and Carl L. Bankston III

      Recent studies indicate a new geographic dispersion of immigrants to states such as Georgia, Minnesota, and North Carolina; to cities that include Phoenix, Las Vegas, Denver, and Nashville; and to smaller towns and villages throughout the southern and western regions of the United States (Kandel and Parrado 2005; Zúñiga and Hernández-León 2005; Saenz et al. 2004; Singer 2004; Bankston 2003; Durand, Massey, and Charvet 2000; Engstrom 2001; Hernández-León and Zúñiga 2000; Grey 1999; Stull, Broadway, and Erickson 1992). What accounts for the initiation of immigration to these new destination areas? This is a key research question.

      Studies suggest that the...


    • Chapter 7 Prejudice Toward Immigrants in the Midwest
      (pp. 151-178)
      Katherine Fennelly

      The literature on contemporary immigrant-host relations in the United States has generally focused on large urban areas, yet during the past ten to fifteen years rural communities in many states experienced a large influx of immigrants attracted by job prospects in the food-processing industry (Fennelly and Leitner 2002; Stull 1998; Griffith 1999; Fennelly 2005). Especially in the midwestern United States, the relocation of meat and poultry processing plants out of urban centers into rural towns spurred the diversification of formerly white, Anglo-Saxon, and Scandinavian-origin communities. This movement was accelerated by business tax incentives, the proximity of water and grain supplies,...

    • Chapter 8 New Midwesterners, New Southerners: Immigration Experiences in Four Rural American Settings
      (pp. 179-210)
      David Griffith

      Since the late 1980s, the midwestern and southern United States have witnessed high levels of immigration from Mexico, Central America, Asia, and Africa; census figures on immigration in some regions display increases of several hundred percent from 1990 to 2000. During the 1990s, research generally focused on changes taking place in new receiving communities as a result of concerted efforts by employers to recruit immigrants into rural industries such as meatpacking, seafood processing, and poultry processing (Stull, Broadway, and Griffith 1995; Grey 1999; Griffith 1993; Fink 2003). These recruitment efforts built on and at times mirrored techniques common in agriculture...

    • Chapter 9 Hispanic Immigration, Black Population Size, and Intergroup Relations in the Rural and Small-Town South
      (pp. 211-248)
      Helen B. Marrow

      American immigration scholars are rapidly gaining interest in “new immigrant destinations”—locales that have little historical experience of post-1965 immigration but which are now receiving immigrants (Durand, Massey, and Charvet 2000; Massey, Durand, and Parrado 1999; Zúñiga and Hernández-León 2005). Implicit in this new interest is the assumption that “context matters.” New immigrant destinations raise eyebrows because of the various ways, both objective and subjective, that geographic place and demographic context affect lives. The size and characteristics of cities, towns, and rural areas can be expected to influence how immigrants experience the United States and interact with local Americans; how...

    • Chapter 10 Nashville’s New “Sonido”: Latino Migration and the Changing Politics of Race
      (pp. 249-273)
      Jamie Winders

      In 2000, the urban and labor scholar Mike Davis wrote that “even Nashville ha[d] a new sonido”(sound) and was feeling the effects of Latino migration. In a clever rhetorical maneuver, Davis highlighted the ubiquity of Latinos across the United States by calling attention to their presence in the most unlikely of places, Nashville, Tennessee, the country music capital of the world and a city virtually absent from the map of urban and immigration studies. Davis mentions Nashville to signal the reach of Latino influence to the very edges of urban America and, in so doing, alludes to a historically powerful...

    • Chapter 11 The Ambivalent Welcome: Cinco de Mayo and the Symbolic Expression of Local Identity and Ethnic Relations
      (pp. 274-307)
      Debra Lattanzi Shutika

      On May 5, 2001, the Borough of Kennett Square, Pennsylvania, hosted its first annual Cinco de Mayo festival. Hailed as a turning point in local ethnic relations, the Cinco de Mayo was initiated as the first large-scale public event that was hosted by the town’s English-speaking majority on behalf of the Mexican families who had been settling in the area since the mid-1980s. Mexican settlement had prompted mixed reactions for the English-speaking majority in this small farming village, ranging from out-right hostility to reluctant acceptance. Intended as a multi-ethnic community event to celebrate local Mexican culture, the Cinco de Mayo...

    • Chapter 12 Race to the Top? The Politics of Immigrant Education in Suburbia
      (pp. 308-340)
      Michael Jones-Correa

      In 2000, 52 percent of America’s immigrants lived in suburbs (U.S. Census Bureau 2001), up from 48 percent in 1999 (Schmidley and Gibson 1999). Thanks in part to the suburbanization of immigrant populations, the percentage of minorities in suburbs has also increased dramatically. In 2000, 33 percent of blacks, 45 percent of Latinos, and 51 percent of Asian Americans lived in suburbs (Humes and McKinnon 2000; McKinnon and Humes 2000; U.S. Census Bureau 2001).¹ The suburbanization of immigrants and minorities is beginning to approach that of the population as a whole. Nonetheless, suburbs, like the nation as a whole, are...


    • Chapter 13 Assimilation in a New Geography
      (pp. 343-354)
      Douglas S. Massey

      The foregoing chapters have clearly documented the remarkable transformation of immigration to the United States that began during the 1990s and continued into the early years of the twenty-first century. During this time, immigration shifted from being a regional phenomenon affecting a handful of states and a few metropolitan areas to a national phenomenon affecting communities of all sizes throughout all fifty states. Although this geographic diversification of destinations was experienced by all immigrant groups, it was most evident among Mexicans and, to a lesser extent, other Latin Americans. Among major immigrant groups, the diversification of destination was least evident...

  8. Index
    (pp. 355-374)