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Coming to America


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About the Author

Roger Daniels is Charles Phelps Taft Professor of History Emeritus at the University of Cincinnati. He received his Ph.D. from UCLA in 1961 and is a past president of both the Immigration and Ethnic History Society and the Society for Historians of the Gilded Age and the Progressive Era. He has written widely about Asian Americans and immigration. Among his most recent books are Not Like Us: Immigrants and Minorities in America, 1890-1924; Debating American Immigration, 1882-Present (with Otis Graham); and American Immigration: A Student Companion.


YA-- After discussing the topic of immigration in general and sociological theories of why people migrate between countries, Daniel discusses each racial or national group that came to the United States during the various eras of the nation's history, giving statistics and patterns of immigration and detailing interesting and often little-known facts. Also set out are the reactions of Americans to the various waves of immigration from the rise of the antiforeign Nativists, Know Nothing, and Ku Klux Klan elements; to the restrictive immigration laws and quotas of the 1920s; through the World War II era incarceration of Japanese Americans in ``resettlement camps.'' This excellent work is an effective tool for increasing multicultural awareness and should be an effective teaching guide for social sciences and humanities.-- Richard Lisker, Fairfax County Pub . Lib . , VA

University of Cincinnati history professor Daniels, in this substantial, impressive social analysis, focuses on the diverse motives and experiences of those who have settled in the U.S. since 1500. He illustrates how, despite racial conflicts, varied ethnic patterns and cultures, emigres, including the controversial recent influx of Hispanics and Cold War refugees, have adapted and contributed to American society. His rich lode of personalized data yields portraits ranging from those of ``nonreligious, hired gun'' Miles Standish to second-generation Italian-American Lee Iacocca. Daniels concludes with a forceful argument that, despite rising nativism spurred by illegal migrants, more immigration is needed to reverse a population decline. Illustrations not seen by PW. (Oct.)

This book provides the first comprehensive history of immigration to the United States in 20 years. It deals with the initial immigration of Western Europeans and Africans during Colonial times, the great influx of Mediterraneans, Eastern Europeans, and Asians from 1820 to 1924, and the more recent migrations of Mexicans, South Americans, and Southeast Asians. Within these three major migration periods, the book is organized into sections about specific immigrant groups. Though offering little analysis of the many reasons for and implications of immigration, this textbook-like narrative utilizes nearly all the existing scholarship on the topic to create a readable synthesis. It provides a quick reference source for nonspecialists and general readers.-- David Szatmary, Univ. of Washington, Seattle

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