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Economic Sociology of Immigration, The

Essays on Networks, Ethnicity, and Entrepreneurship

Alejandro Portes

Publication Year: 1998

The Economic Sociology of Immigration forges a dynamic link between the theoretical innovations of economic sociology with the latest empirical findings from immigration research, an area of critical concern as the problems of ethnic poverty and inequality become increasingly profound. Alejandro Portes' lucid overview of sociological approaches to economic phenomena provides the framework for six thoughtful, wide-ranging investigations into ethnic and immigrant labor networks and social resources, entrepreneurship, and cultural assimilation. Mark Granovetter illustrates how small businesses built on the bonds of ethnicity and kinship can, under certain conditions, flourish remarkably well. Bryan R. Roberts demonstrates how immigrant groups' expectations of the duration of their stay influence their propensity toward entrepreneurship. Ivan Light and Carolyn Rosenstein chart how specific metropolitan environments have stimulated or impeded entrepreneurial ventures in five ethnic populations. Saskia Sassen provides a revealing analysis of the unexpectedly flexible and vital labor market networks maintained between immigrants and their native countries, while M. Patricia Fernandez Kelly looks specifically at the black inner city to examine how insular cultural values hinder the acquisition of skills and jobs outside the neighborhood. Alejandro Portes also depicts the difference between the attitudes of American-born youths and those of recent immigrants and its effect on the economic success of immigrant children.

Published by: Russell Sage Foundation

Title Page

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pp. v-vi

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pp. vii-xii

The title and subtitle of this finely calibrated volume serve its potential readers well. The title instantly directs attention to its principal scholarly aim-a linkage and partial fusion of ideas central to both economic sociology and the sociology of immigration, fields...

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pp. xiii-xvi

This book is the product of a year-long collective project organized under the auspices of the Russell Sage Foundation and conducted at the Foundation's offices in New York City. Recent developments in economic sociology have garnered a great deal of...

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1. Economic Sociology and the Sociology of Immigration: A Conceptual Overview

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pp. 1-41

The sociological perspective on the economy is currently experiencing a vigorous revival. Its resurgence has been due, in part, to mounting doubts within the discipline of economics itself that neoclassical theory provides a satisfactory framework for the explanation...

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2. Socially Expected Durations and the Economic Adjustment of Immigrants

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pp. 42-86

Immigrants of different national or ethnic origins vary widely in their economic adjustment in the United States. First-generation immigrants and, at times, their descendants have differed in their occupations, in their propensity to be self-employed, and in their average...

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3. Immigration and Local Labor Markets

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pp. 87-127

Using constructs from the new economic sociology and data from the immigration literature, this chapter develops the concept of the local labor market. Going beyond the focus on the moment of exchange typical in neoclassical analyses, the purpose here is to capture...

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4. The Economic Sociology of Firms and Entrepreneurs

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pp. 128-165

In this chapter I analyze some of the ways in which social structure determines the scope of economic action, with special attention to the significance for the emergence of entrepreneurial activity of the complex social networks found in many ethnic and immigrant communities...

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5. Expanding the Interaction Theory of Entrepreneurship

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pp. 166-212

Max Weber declared that economic sociology must start from the desire for utilities and the provision to furnish them.1 Adhering to this tradition, textbooks have long claimed that both supply and demand require attention in a complete explanation of...

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6. Social and Cultural Capital in the Urban Ghetto: Implications for the Economic Sociology of Immigration

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pp. 213-247

The purpose of this chapter is to examine the relationship between social and cultural capital. To achieve that end, I focus on early motherhood among impoverished ghetto women. The subject is of interest given differing perspectives that assign causal priority...

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7. Children of Immigrants: Segmented Assimilation and Its Determinants

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pp. 248-280

Growing up in an immigrant family has always been a difficult process of reconciling the language and cultural orientations of foreign-born parents with the demands for assimilation of the host society. In the American experience, the process has traditionally...


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pp. 281-312

E-ISBN-13: 9781610444521
Print-ISBN-13: 9780871546821
Print-ISBN-10: 0871546825

Page Count: 320
Publication Year: 1998

OCLC Number: 835509855
MUSE Marc Record: Download for Economic Sociology of Immigration, The

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Subject Headings

  • United States -- Emigration and immigration -- Government policy.
  • United States -- Emigration and immigration -- Economic aspects.
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