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Transforming Politics, Transforming America

The Political and Civic Incorporation of Immigrants in the United States

Edited by Taeku Lee, S. Karthick Ramakrishnan, and Ricardo Ramírez

Publication Year: 2012

Over the past four decades, the foreign-born population in the United States has nearly tripled, from about 10 million in 1965 to more than 30 million today. This wave of new Americans comes in disproportionately large numbers from Latin America and Asia, a pattern that is likely to continue in this century. In Transforming Politics, Transforming America, editors Taeku Lee, S. Karthick Ramakrishnan, and Ricardo Ramírez bring together the newest work of prominent scholars in the field of immigrant political incorporation to provide the first comprehensive look at the political behavior of immigrants.Focusing on the period from 1965 to the year 2020, this volume tackles the fundamental yet relatively neglected questions, What is the meaning of citizenship, and what is its political relevance? How are immigrants changing our notions of racial and ethnic categorization? How is immigration transforming our understanding of mobilization, participation, and political assimilation? With an emphasis on research that brings innovative theory, quantitative methods, and systematic data to bear on such questions, this volume presents a provocative evidence-based examination of the consequences that these demographic changes might have for the contemporary politics of the United States as well as for the concerns, categories, and conceptual frameworks we use to study race relations and ethnic politics.

Contributors Bruce Cain (University of California, Berkeley) * Grace Cho (University of Michigan) * Jack Citrin (University of California, Berkeley) * Louis DeSipio (University of California, Irvine) * Brendan Doherty (University of California, Berkeley) * Lisa García Bedolla (University of California, Irvine) * Zoltan Hajnal (University of California, San Diego) * Jennifer Holdaway (Social Science Research Council) * Jane Junn (Rutgers University) * Philip Kasinitz (City University of New York) * Taeku Lee (University of California, Berkeley) * John Mollenkopf (City University of New York) * Tatishe Mavovosi Nteta (University of California, Berkeley) * Kathryn Pearson (University of Minnesota) * Kenneth Prewitt (Columbia University) * S. Karthick Ramakrishnan (University of California, Riverside) * Ricardo Ramírez (University of Southern California) * Mary Waters (Harvard University) * Cara Wong (University of Michigan) * Janelle Wong (University of Southern California)

Published by: University of Virginia Press

Title Page, Copyright, Dedication

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pp. 1-6


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pp. vii-viii

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pp. ix-x

This volume started as a series of casual conversations between Bruce Cain, Jack Citrin, and the three of us in the fall of 2002. These riffs eventually harmonized into a few convergent themes about the state of political science research on immigration and ethnic politics in the United States. ...

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pp. 1-16

The idea of America as a “nation of immigrants” harkens to well before the country’s founding, with thousands of settlers and slaves pouring into the Colonies from England, continental Europe, and Africa. As the epigraphs from Franklin and Crèvecoeur suggest, there has been little consensus throughout our history ...

Part 1: The Fundamentals of Measurement

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Immigrants and the Changing Categories of Race

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pp. 19-31

The study of immigration has its distinct vocabulary—incorporation, assimilation, mobilization, coalitions, conflict, identity, and so forth. The terms in play touch on the broad question of whether ethnic and racial boundaries are being hardened or blurred, and to what extent the recent immigrant flows contribute to some mixture of these outcomes. ...

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Mobilizing Group Consciousness: When Does Ethnicity Have Political Consequences?

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pp. 32-48

On any weekend between early spring and late fall in New York City, a celebration of identity marching on Fifth or Madison Avenues can be witnessed. “Kiss Me I’m Irish” buttons mark the beginning of the season of the mass display of group identification at the most venerable of parades on St. Patrick’s Day. ...

Part 2: Citizenship: Here and Abroad

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Rethinking Citizenship: Noncitizen Voting and Immigrant Political Engagement in the United States

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pp. 51-70

In June 2003, the Office of the Inspector General in the Justice Department released a report documenting the treatment of post-9/11 detainees held in New York and New Jersey. The report found that both the Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) and Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) made little distinction between detainees ...

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Jus Meritum: Citizenship for Service

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pp. 71-88

According to scholars of citizenship, there are two main principles that have been used by nations to decide citizenship (and nationality): lineage and land (Aleinikoff and Klusmeyer 2001, Faulks 2000, Heater 1999, Kondo 2001, Shafir 1998). Jus sanguinis, or “right of blood,” refers to a law of descent, whereby citizenship is accrued from one’s parents.1 ...

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The Impact Of Dual Nationality on Political Participation

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pp. 89-105

Global economic forces and new regional political arrangements are changing our conceptions of citizenship and nationality.1 More nations now offer opportunities for dual nationality than before. Regional agreements such as the European Union give foreign nationals employment and travel rights that were previously granted to citizens only. ...

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Transnational Politics and Civic Engagement: Do Home-Country Political Ties Limit Latino Immigrant Pursuit of U.S. Civic Engagement and Citizenship?

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pp. 106-126

Over the past decade, the number of immigrants naturalizing in the United States has surged. According to the Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) and the Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services, naturalizations grew from an average of 146,000 annually in the 1970s, to 221,000 annually in the 1980s, to 562,000 annually in the 1990s. ...

Part 3: After Citizenship: Party Identification and Mobilization

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Out of Line: Immigration and Party Identification among Latinos and Asian Americans

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pp. 129-150

Much of the burgeoning literature on contemporary immigrant political incorporation is motivated by careful theory and analysis on how today’s political parties compare with those of yesteryear (e.g., see Jones-Correa 1998a; Rogers 2000b; Wong 2000a; Gerstle and Mollenkopf 2001; Ramírez 2002; Lien, Conway, and Wong 2004; Ramírez and Wong, this volume). ...

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Nonpartisan Latino and Asian American Contactability and Voter Mobilization

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pp. 151-172

An inclusive political system is arguably one of the hallmarks of a democratic society. Yet Asian Americans and Latinos, two of the fastest growing segments of the American population, consistently demonstrate the lowest turnout rates of the major ethnic or racial groups (Jamieson, Shin, and Day 2002). ...

Part 4: Portents for the Future

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Politics among Young Adults in New York: The Immigrant Second Generation

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pp. 175-193

Attempts by new immigrant ethnic groups to gain entry into a political establishment dominated by earlier ethnic groups has been a central story in the politics of New York and many other large old American cities. Established groups have viewed these attempts as threatening to destabilize prevailing electoral arrangements ...

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Plus Ça Change, Plus C’est la Même Chose? An Examination of the Racial Attitudes of New Immigrants in the United States

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pp. 194-216

The influx of new immigrants since 1965 has led to a burgeoning literature in the social sciences that contrasts the political incorporation of a new wave of immigrants, from Asia and Latin America, with previous waves of immigrants from Europe in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. ...

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The Political Assimilation of the Fourth Wave

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pp. 217-242

As a nation of immigrants, the United States has always confronted the challenge of balancing unity and diversity. By bringing strangers into one’s land, to use John Higham’s evocative phrase (1985), largescale immigration poses a potential threat to the sense of shared identity that is the foundation of nationhood. ...

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But Do They Bowl? Race, Immigrant Incorporation, and Civic Voluntarism in the United States

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pp. 243-260

The relationships between race, immigrant incorporation, and voting participation in the United States are by now well established. Studies based on state- and national-level datasets have shown that first-generation immigrants are generally less likely to vote in elections than those in higher immigrant generations are. ...

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pp. 261-270

This volume starts with a simple observation. The study of immigrant adaptation has, until now, been dominated more by questions of economic, social, and cultural adjustment than of civic and political incorporation. This volume aims to bring us closer to an understanding of the political life of Latinos, Asian Americans, and other new immigrants to the United States. ...


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pp. 271-298

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pp. 299-300

Bruce Cain is Robson Professor of Political Science, Director of the Institute of Governmental Studies at the University of California, Berkeley, and Director of the University of California Washington Center, Washington, D.C. ...


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pp. 301-307

Further Reading

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p. 320-320

E-ISBN-13: 9780813934204
Print-ISBN-13: 9780813925455

Page Count: 320
Publication Year: 2012