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The Socialization and Accommodation of the Russophone Immigrants

Gold, Steven J.

This presentation will focus on the experience of Russian-speaking Jews who entered the US between the late 1960s and the present. It will use a sociological perspective to describe their social characteristics, pre-migration life, motives for exit and experience of adaptation, community formation, economic adjustment, context of reception, (including Cold-War refugee policies), and identity-reconstruction in the US. It uses historical, demographic, and ethnographic data and documentary photography to describe the groups: general trajectory, while also identifying unique patterns of subgroups characterized by region of origin, age, gender, levels of skill, religious outlook, sub-cultural factors, period of arrival and locations of settlement in the US. The presentation will compare the experiences of recent Russian-speaking Jewish migrants with that of the large population of Russian Jews who entered the US between 1880-1920, and will examine the relationship between these two groups. Finally, the presentation will explore similarities and differences in the experience of recent Russian-speaking Jewish migrants in the US and that of other contemporary migrant groups, including Asians, Latin Americans, and Caribbeans.

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Harriman Institute
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September 20, 2013