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The Next Generation

The Next Generation: Immigrant Youth in a Comparative Perspective

Richard Alba
Mary C. Waters
Copyright Date: 2011
Published by: NYU Press
Pages: 382
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  • Book Info
    The Next Generation
    Book Description:

    One fifth of the population of the United States belongs to the immigrant or second generations. While the US is generally thought of as the immigrant society par excellence, it now has a number of rivals in Europe. The Next Generation brings together studies from top immigration scholars to explore how the integration of immigrants affects the generations that come after. The original essays explore the early beginnings of the second generation in the United States and Western Europe, exploring the overall patterns of success of the second generation.While there are many striking similarities in the situations of the children of labor immigrants coming from outside the highly developed worlds of Europe and North America, wherever one looks, subtle features of national and local contexts interact with characteristics of the immigrant groups themselves to create variations in second-generation trajectories. The contributors show that these issues are of the utmost importance for the future, for they will determine the degree to which contemporary immigration will produce either durable ethno-racial cleavages or mainstream integration.Contributors: Dalia Abdel-Hady, Frank D. Bean, Susan K. Brown, Maurice Crul, Nancy A. Denton, Rosita Fibbi, Nancy Foner, Anthony F. Heath, Donald J. Hernandez, Tariqul Islam, Frank Kalter, Philip Kasinitz, Mark A. Leach, Mathias Lerch, Suzanne E. Macartney, Karen G Marotz, Noriko Matsumoto, Tariq Modood, Joel Perlmann, Karen Phalet, Jeffrey G. Reitz, Rubn G. Rumbaut, Roxanne Silberman, Philippe Wanner, Aviva Zeltzer-Zubida, andYe Zhang.

    eISBN: 978-0-8147-0538-4
    Subjects: Sociology

Table of Contents

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  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-iv)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. v-vi)
  3. Acknowledgments
    (pp. vii-viii)
  4. 1 Dimensions of Second-Generation Incorporation: AN INTRODUCTION TO THE BOOK
    (pp. 1-28)
    Richard Alba and Mary C. Waters

    Immigration is transforming the societies of North America and western Europe in ways that could not have been predicted a few decades ago. The roots of this population movement extend back to the middle of the twentieth century—a period of world war and recovery from wartime destruction—and they have been nourished subsequently by decolonization, economic development, and political instability in the Third World, along with the steadily shrinking significance of distance in human affairs, a development often referred to by the termglobalization.

    One consequence of these population movements has been the rise of ethnic, religious, and racial...


    • 2 Legalization and Naturalization Trajectories among Mexican Immigrants and Their Implications for the Second Generation
      (pp. 31-45)
      Susan K. Brown, Frank D. Bean, Mark A. Leach and Rubén G. Rumbaut

      Discussions over the past four decades about reforming immigration law in the United States seem inevitably to swing to the issue of migration from Mexico. No other national group provides more immigrants to the United States, both legal and unauthorized. As of 2008, Mexican immigrants numbered 12.8 million, or about 32 percent of all immigrants (Pew Hispanic Center 2009). In 2008, 13.7 percent of all the people granted the status of legal permanent residency (LPR) were Mexican (Office of Immigration Statistics 2008). Starting in 2005, annual inflows of unauthorized Mexicans began to fall, and the total unauthorized population from Mexico...

      (pp. 46-66)
      Donald J. Hernandez, Nancy A. Denton and Suzanne Macartney

      Research clearly indicates that early childhood education programs can promote school readiness and educational success (Haskins and Rouse 2005; Lynch 2004). Children of immigrant parents with low educational attainments and limited English proficiency are especially likely to benefit from such programs (Gormley et al. 2005; Hernandez 2004), but they are less likely to be enrolled than are the children of native parents. This appears to be especially true for the children of Hispanic immigrants. A reason often cited for these lower enrollment rates is a more familistic cultural orientation that leads parents to prefer that their children be cared for...


    • 4 The Mexican American Second Generation in Census 2000: EDUCATION AND EARNINGS
      (pp. 69-94)
      Joel Perlmann

      I began working on this chapter at the time I was also engaged in the research for my 2005 book,Italians Then, Mexicans Now: Immigrant Origins and Second-Generation Progress, 1890–2000. The substantive evidence that I developed then related to crucial claims of segmented-assimilation theory about negative outcomes for children of contemporary immigrants. This evidence, mainly from Census 2000, concerns indicators of downward assimilation into an underclass and levels of second-generation earnings. Since my book appeared, Alejandro Portes and his coauthors have responded at some length to the evidence and arguments (Portes 2006; Portes, Fernandez-Kelly, and Haller 2005; Portes and...

      (pp. 95-109)
      Richard Alba, Dalia Abdel-Hady, Tariqul Islam and Karen Marotz

      An influential perspective on contemporary immigration and the U.S.-born generations issuing from it originates with the theory of segmented assimilation (Portes and Zhou 1993; see also Gans 1992). It sees the descendants of today’s immigrants as at risk of what has been called “downward assimilation”: a failure to advance beyond the humble status of the immigrant generation, which is then transformed into a negative self-evaluation because of a change in frame of reference, from that of the origin society to that of the receiving one. Downward assimilation is held to be associated with continuing racism in the United States and...

    • 6 School Qualifications of Children of Immigrant Descent in Switzerland
      (pp. 110-134)
      Rosita Fibbi, Mathias Lerch and Philippe Wanner

      With foreigners (1.5 million in 2000) amounting to 20 percent of Switzerland’s resident population, the country has one of the highest noncitizen percentages in Europe, significantly more than Germany (8.9 percent in 2001), Austria (9.4 percent), France (5.6 percent), and Italy (2.2 percent). This high proportion is partly due to Switzerland’s relatively restrictive naturalization law, which does not automatically grant Swiss nationality to children born of immigrants on Swiss territory.

      Switzerland has also become a true immigration country due to the high flow of immigrants in the 1990s, as 23 percent of the population has been born abroad. Moreover, the...

    • 7 Ethnic Community, Urban Economy, and Second-Generation Attainment: TURKISH DISADVANTAGE IN BELGIUM
      (pp. 135-165)
      Karen Phalet and Anthony Heath

      Across Western Europe the children of the post-1965 migrants are leaving school and entering the labor market in increasing numbers (W. Haug 2002). How this “new second generation” makes the transition from school to work is crucial for the success of migrant integration in European societies.¹ Our empirical vantage point on this wider question is an investigation of the socioeconomic attainment of the Turkish second generation in Brussels, Belgium. Not only is the Turkish case an interesting puzzle politically—Turkish migration is a key issue in ongoing negotiations and recurrent public debates over Turkey’s accession to the European Union (Erzan...

    • 8 The Second Generation in the German Labor Market: EXPLAINING THE TURKISH EXCEPTION
      (pp. 166-184)
      Frank Kalter

      In recent years a number of large-scale studies have addressed the integration of former labor migrants’ children into the German labor market (Granato 2004; Granato and Kalter 2001; Kalter 2005; Kalter and Granato 2002, 2007; Kalter, Granato, and Kristen 2007; Konietzka and Seibert 2003; Seibert and Solga 2005). Despite the use of very different indicators of labor success, the findings are rather consistent and lead to a series of stable common insights. First, although doing noticeably better than the first generation, the second generation is still clearly disadvantaged compared to native-born Germans. This holds true at least for Greeks, Italians,...

    • 9 Capitals, Ethnic Identity, and Educational Qualifications
      (pp. 185-204)
      Tariq Modood

      Savage, Warde, and Devine (2005) argue that if we accept the shift in definition of class as macrorelationships of exploitation to the possession of resources by individual actors—as many sociologists have done—then an argument can be made for the importance of concepts such as cultural capital. They argue, “If social class is a matter of categories of people accumulating similar volumes and types of resources, and investing them in promoting their own and their children’s life chances, the metaphor of capital is helpful” (2005, 7). I find helpful this conception of social class as a likelihood of members’...


    • 10 National and Urban Contexts for the Integration of the Second Generation in the United States and Canada
      (pp. 207-228)
      Jeffrey G. Reitz and Ye Zhang

      Is the second generation more successfully integrated in some countries than in others? Cross-national comparisons of the success of the second generation suggest countries may differ as contexts for the assimilation of minorities, with some providing better opportunities for economic mobility or social inclusion than others (Crul and Vermeulen 2003). Given that characteristics of host societies shape the reception and integration of immigrants (Reitz 2003), the questions arise whether these effects, and possibly others, carry over to affect the second generation and, if so, how and why. The following analysis provides such a comparison for the United States and Canada...

      (pp. 229-248)
      Philip Kasinitz, Noriko Matsumoto and Aviva Zeltzer-Zubida

      Few arenas of second-generation incorporation are more important than the labor force. Yet in the most influential accounts of the children of immigrants the discussion of their work lives is largely speculative (i.e., Gans 1992; Portes and Zhou 1993) or aspirational—that is, based on the educational attainment and occupational ambitions of young people still in their late teens (Portes and Rumbaut 2001). This is because the data behind these discussions largely date from the early 1990s, and it was not until later in that decade that the children of post-1965 immigrants began to enter the American labor force in...


    • 12 Black Identities and the Second Generation: AFRO-CARIBBEANS IN BRITAIN AND THE UNITED STATES
      (pp. 251-268)
      Nancy Foner

      It is a sociological truism that the place where the children of immigrants grow up and live shapes how they come to see themselves and others. Context matters. This is obvious. What is not obvious, however, is justhowcontext matters. Although we may expect to find contrasts among the second generation who live in different countries, we cannot always predict how they will differ. Nor are the structural differences among receiving societies that influence identity formation always immediately apparent. Careful cross-national comparisons allow us to appreciate the complex, sometimes subtle, and often surprising ways that the social, political, and...

      (pp. 269-282)
      Maurice Crul

      Research on the second generation of postwar immigrants is a relatively new phenomenon. Only in the past decade has it become a central focus in the study of immigrant integration. In the United States in particular, a theoretical debate has evolved in which research on the second generation plays a fundamental role. That research began to emerge in the mid-1990s, and one of the first publications wasThe New Second Generation, edited by Portes (1996). The postwar second generation in Europe came of age at roughly the same time as the American one. Examples of early studies in various European...

    • 14 The Employment of Second Generations in France: THE REPUBLICAN MODEL AND THE NOVEMBER 2005 RIOTS
      (pp. 283-316)
      Roxane Silberman

      The November 2005 youth riots in France revealed serious shortcomings in the “Republican model” for the integration of immigrants and their offspring into French society. The riots marked an escalation in a two-decade history of weekend car burnings and confrontations with the police. Occurring in low-income neighborhoods characterized by unemployment, drug use, crime, and violence, the riots spurred increasing reference to “ghettos,” a term long rejected by some researchers (Body-Gendrot 1999), who deny any resemblance of these neighborhoods to the low-income minority areas of the United States. Unsurprisingly, the riots involved many second-generation Maghrebins (who are of North African descent),...

  9. References
    (pp. 317-346)
  10. About the Contributors
    (pp. 347-354)
  11. Index
    (pp. 355-369)