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1 - The Other Side of Assimilation: How Immigrants are Changing American Life (University of California Press, 2017) by Tomas R. Jimenez

Tue, August 13, 8:30 to 10:10am, New York Hilton, Floor: Second Floor, Clinton

Session Submission Type: Author Meets Critics Session


This theoretically innovative, empirically rigorous, and substantively important book deals with the complex linkages among immigration, assimilation, intergroup contact and race relations with clarity, complexity, compassion, and coherence. The book’s premise is rooted in the observation made by numerous scholars that United States has changed because of the presence of a large immigrant population. In 2016, one in four Americans are immigrants or the children of immigrants. Although four decades of scholarship on immigrant integration has examined how immigrants and their children are becoming Americans by adjusting to new racial, ethnic, economic, and political contexts, there has been virtually no research that seeks to address the other side of that equation: how American society has also changed as a result of immigration. As Jiménez notes, the observation that immigrants are changing so much begs the question: what do those changes mean for individuals whose families have been in United States for multiple generations? Jiménez calls these individuals – those who are born in the US to US-born parents – “established individuals.” The book proceeds to examine the experiences of a diverse spectrum of established individuals who live in three Silicon Valley cities that have been reshaped by immigration: East Palo Alto, Cupertino, and Berryessa (a neighborhood of San Jose).

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