American Immigration: A Very Short Introduction (2nd edition) [#274]
American Immigration: A Very Short Introduction (2nd edition) [#274]


  • Updates work on immigration debates and developments over the past decade.
  • Covers all three major waves of immigration.
  • Brings together white European immigration with Latin American and Asian immigration.

An updated, penetrating, and balanced analysis of one of the most contentious issues in America today, offering a historically informed portrait of immigration.

Americans have come from every corner of the globe, and they have been brought together by a variety of historical processes—conquest, colonialism, the slave trade, territorial acquisition, and voluntary immigration. In this Very Short Introduction, historian David A. Gerber captures the histories of dozens of American ethnic groups over more than two centuries and reveals how American life has been formed in significant ways by immigration. He discusses the relationships between race and ethnicity in the life of these groups and in the formation of American society, as well as explaining how immigration policy and legislation have helped to form those relationships. Moreover, by highlighting the parallels that contemporary patterns of immigration and resettlement share with those of the past - which Americans now generally regard as having had positive outcomes - the book offers an optimistic portrait of current immigration that is at odds with much present-day opinion. Newly updated, this book speaks directly to the ongoing fears of immigration that have fueled the debate about both illegal immigration and the need for stronger immigration laws and a border wall.


Preface to the second edition
List of illustrations

Introduction: mass immigration, past and present

Part I The law of immigration and the legal construction of citizenship
1. Unregulated immigration and its opponents from Colonial America to the mid-nineteenth century
2. Regulation and exclusion
3. Removing barriers and debating consequences

Part II Emigration and immigration from international migrants' perspectives
4. Mass population movements and resettlement, 1820-1924
5. Mass population movements and resettlement, 1965 to the present

Part III The dialogue of ethnicity and assimilation
6. The widening mainstream
7. The future of assimilation


Further reading


David A. Gerber is Distinguished Professor of History Emeritus at the University at Buffalo. He is the author of The Making of an American Pluralism and Authors of Their Lives.

"David Gerber has achieved a remarkable feat in synthesizing and interpreting a vast literature on American immigration over the centuries in this short introduction. Sensitive to historical detail but also attuned to broader perspectives, this well-written and engaging book is full of insights about the causes, consequences, and legal context of immigration and reminds us that current immigration debates have a long history." - Nancy Foner, author of From Ellis Island to JFK: New York's Two Great Waves of Immigration

"In this insightful, brief volume, Gerber makes effective use of recent historical scholarship in a cogent and highly accessible analysis of contemporary immigration issues." - Barbara M. Posadas, Northern Illinois University


ISBN : 9780197542422

David A. Gerber
168 ページ
111 x 174 mm
Very Short Introductions





American Immigration: A Very Short Introduction (2nd edition) [#274]

American Immigration: A Very Short Introduction (2nd edition) [#274]

American Immigration: A Very Short Introduction (2nd edition) [#274]