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Migration, Miami, & Cuba SPR14 Anth111

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Julie Jenkins

on 7 April 2014

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Transcript of Migration, Miami, & Cuba SPR14 Anth111

Migration, Cuba & Miami
• Movement out of Africa -in search of better climates, natural resources
rate of migration intensified in the last 30 years.

- Internal-- within national boundaries (rural to urban, internally displaced)
- International-- across national boundaries
- Transnational-- regular movement between or social, economic, political participation in two nations
Why do people migrate?
-- famine
--natural disasters
--political or religious oppression
-- lack of economic opportunities
United States
Long history of migration & central to our myth of origin
16th - 19th Century
-British & Dutch migrants
---African - forced migration
--European - indentured servitude

19th century
--Increase in Irish & Chinese migration
Chinese Exclusion Act
Early 20th Century--
German, Italian, Eastern European migration
--escaping religious persecution
1965-- reformed immigration laws
--repealed quota systems
--emphasis on professional
--emphasis on family reunification
Theories emerged during the context of early 20th century migration
--concerned about the retention of 'ethnicity' versus assimilation
Park & Burgess (sociologists, circa 1925)
--assimilation process inevitable
--inter-group interaction & sharing experience would replace ethnic identities
--create a "melting-pot" of individuals with "American temperament"
assimilation-- process whereby individuals or groups absorbed into another (dominant) group
Gordon: two stages
--acculturation, then assimilation
--acculturation: process of acquiring "second culture", b/c of sustained and imbalanced contact

but...find that contact between individuals and groups also reinforces categories of ethnicity
--symbolic markers used to enhance distinction, particularly in context of social inequality & discrimination
--"Rather than reflecting immigrant's beliefs or actions, the quality and form of interaction depends on the relative power of groups within a particular context"
--migration to picks up in 1960s
--Latino-Americans & migrants majority with significant political & economic power
--Haitian & other Caribbean Americans & migrants marginalized economically & politically
--20% white, but hold 75% of judicial positions, 51% of political positions
Migration is stretching the network of human interaction
pushes & pulls: forces that spur migration from country of origin and draw migrants to a new destination
Destination aren't random!
--better job opps
--higher wages
--family connections
--ideas about certain localities & lifestyles based on media
Bridges & Barriers
--chain migration
--political histories
--transportation networks
--immigration policies
Who Migrates?
--low skilled labor migrants
--Professional migrants
--Entrepreneurial migrants

Where do people move to?
23% in North America
--20% in U.S.
Irish- 1840s
--helped build roads, canals, RR
-California gold mines, farming, & RR
debates about how to situate Chinese & Irish into a racial classification
-emerging consciousness of 'race' & construction of 'whiteness"
--ability to own gun, land, political & social freedom, voting
--also understood as separate, inferior 'races'
--race classed by class position, degree of freedom, and conformity to dominant social standards
warnings about 'destroying' the 'unity' of the US.
--National origins Acts of 1924
-- quota system and ranking 'success' based on "race"
anyone from Cuba-- considered "political refugees"
--100% claims granted.
--Spanish Settlement in 1511
--1898-- ceded to US (Treaty of Paris)
--Independence in 1902, but US retained right to intervene in affairs
--Castro's Revolution in 1959
--legalised Communist Party
--1961-- Bay of Pigs
--How did Cuban Americans come to have economic and political power in Miami?
--How did this compare to African American economic and political opportunities?
--Cuban migrants permitted to become permanent US residents after 1 year
--given access to federal support
--re-established economic enterprises in Miami quickly
economic elites in Miami had to reach out to Cubans
--challenged white economic and political power structures

African Americans -- trying to achieve economic & political equality that was historically denied to them
issue is about how economic resources & power are distributed/divided between groups
--not intrinsically rooted in differences between races or ethnicities
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