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Immigration - Essay Example

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The dreams of living in a better socio-economic condition have been fundamental to the modern trend of immigration across the globe. Some of the essential factors influencing the dreams of immigrants all over the world include the attainment of stability, security, economic and social liberty, overall progress of personal life, etc. …
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Essay The dreams of living in a better socio-economic condition have been fundamental to the modern trend of immigration across the globe. Some of the essential factors influencing the dreams of immigrants all over the world include the attainment of stability, security, economic and social liberty, overall progress of personal life, etc. The basic similarities and difference between different kinds of dreams of immigrants become evident in an understanding of the American dream of Korean immigrants and the European dream of African immigrants. Whereas the Koreans and Africans dream of improving the condition of their life through immigration, the American dream of the Korean immigrants and the European dream of the African immigrants have several dissimilarities. This paper makes a profound investigation of how the experiences of the Korean immigrants and the African immigrants are fundamentally similar although there are various dissimilarities among them. In a reflective exploration of the American dream of the Korean immigrants and the European dream of the African immigrants, it becomes lucid that both these groups have fundamentally similar dreams about immigration. The American dream of Korean immigrants is best reflected by Kyeyoung Park (1997) who maintains that the foremost principle of Korean immigrants in America is the attainment of anjong, i.e. establishment, stability, or security. It is not because they cannot survive in their home country that the Koreans emigrate, but because of their dream about America which is described as American fever. According to Kyeyoung Park, the Korean immigrants assume specific methods to take advantages of the opportunities available to them and they analyze the causes and consequences of their experience and social relations. “They see establishment of their own small businesses as a route to the American dream.” (Park, 3) Similarly, the African immigrants also shared a corresponding dream, i.e. European dream, which led several Africans to pursue their life-goals in various countries of Europe. Significantly, the European dream of the African immigrants was immensely idealistic and Europe was nothing but paradise to the Africans. As Martijn van Tol puts it, “The streets are paved with gold and money grows on trees. As soon as you arrive you can start living the good life. This is Europe, seen through African eyes.” (Tol) Therefore, it is important to recognize that both the Korean immigrants and the African immigrants have been guided by their dream of a land where they could achieve their socio-cultural and economic prosperity and progress. However, the American dream of the Korean immigrants and the European dream of the African immigrants are basically different, mainly because the dream of the Korean immigrants is more of realistic and level-headed, whereas that of the African immigrants is unrealistic and naive. In the case of the Korean immigrants, the context of post-colonial was immensely instrumental in the widespread immigration to America and they had an effective strategy of chagigage katki, i.e. establishing one’s own small business, for the “adaption to the American ideology of individual success.” (Park, 3) On the contrary, the African immigrants have never been able to recognize the reality of their dream, even after the European dream turned out to be unrewarding. It is important to recognize that the European dream offered them nothing but ‘loneliness, discrimination, and constant fear of the authorities’ and they were forced to work relentlessly in low-paying jobs of exploitation. “The faith in a European paradise remains unshakeable and warnings fall on deaf ears…” (Tol) In short, the American dream of the Korean immigrants and the European dream of the African immigrants have several elements in common, although there are certain underlying differences between their experiences. It is important to relate here that the various immigrant groups that go to different countries for different reasons have almost the similar dreams and experiences. Works Cited Park, Kyeyoung. The Korean American dream: immigrants and small business in New York City. New York: Cornell University Press. 1997. P 3. Tol, Martijn van. “The European dream: made in Africa.” 2009. RNW. 29 March 2011. . Read More
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