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Sociology: Immigration - Book Report/Review Example

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Sociology: Immigration A Review of, Americans in Waiting, by Hiroshi Motomura by Your Name Class Name School Name November 24, 2015 Sociology: Immigration Immigration has been at the forefront of political debate for many years now. There are some who believe that allowing too many immigrants into the country with alter our society and in an essence America will lose what it is to be American…
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Sociology: Immigration

Download file to see previous pages... When did immigration stop being a key to our nation’s success, and start becoming an issue? Hiroshi Motomura in his book, Americans in Waiting, attempts to answer these questions and to demonstrate how this decline, in America’s view and treatment of immigration, has actually created the issues now faced. In his writing he takes his readers back, to a hundred and fifty year long span, where immigration was considered essential to the American way of life. After taking a look at a summary of this writing, an analysis of the three typologies he outlines for citizenship, and evaluating the importance of citizenship for immigration policies, perhaps a clearer picture will begin to form for what the real issue of immigration is. The book, Americans in Waiting, primarily focuses on how the view and treatment of immigration and immigrants has changed over time. By looking into America’s past the author, Hiroshi Motomura, finds a simple, yet profound connection between immigration and citizenship. This connection is that, for over one hundred and fifty years immigrants to America were immediately put on track to becoming citizens. The first way the United States accomplished this was by giving them homestead land on the western frontier. This allowed the immigrants to actually “own” a part of America so they immediately felt a connection between their land and the country they were to become a part of. They were also given diplomatic, overseas protection, so that they were free to travel abroad and had the knowledge that they would always be welcomed ‘home’. The final major way this was accomplished was by allowing them the right to vote, even as citizens-to-be. This gave them a voice in society and allowed them to feel a sense of duty and ownership to what was going on in the nation. All of these rights bestowed on the immigrant allowed them to feel a part of the community, and immigration, during that time, was viewed as just that, a transition to citizenship. Motomura states, that these immigrants were in essence considered, Americans in waiting. Motomura goes on to demonstrate in this book, however, that this view has slowly changed over the years. What was once considered essential to American policy on immigration has now all but vanished, according to him. He states that this change began to take place in the early twentieth century. It was during this time that the United States began to treat its immigrants in one of two ways: as signers of a contract that would state the terms of their stay in the country, or as associates who can earn their rights only as they slowly transition into this nation’s way of life. In this way Motomura says that immigrants were no longer viewed or treated as future citizens, or even as a part of the community. Instead they are now seen as passers through or a problem to be solved. This book gives a clear view of the history of immigration and citizenship over the past two hundred years in the United States. It concludes by revealing a clear lesson to be learned from this history, which is, only in reverting back to how immigration was handled in the past, can this nation ensure both current and future citizens feel the sense of belonging; which, is vital to full involvement in American life. Motomura outlines three major typologies of ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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