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Multicultural America: An Encyclopedia of the Newest Americans [4 volumes]
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ix Preface Most Americans are aware of the many new immigrants arriving in the United States but know little about them. This encyclopedia was planned to provide thor- ough studies of these newest immigrants, who have come mainly after the 1965 Immigration and Nationality Act. After that legislation, America shifted from a country that excluded people on the basis of national origins to a more inclusive society that welcomed people from many lands. Never before had so many immi- grants arrived from Asia, Africa, and Latin America. These volumes are directed toward readers who want comprehensive narrative information, along with a set of special features to bring these new groups to life. Statistics are provided, but the text emphasizes history, identity, and culture. The four volumes include 50 country en- tries, ranging alphabetically from Afghanistan to Vietnam. Relatively little-known immigrant-sending nations such as Bangladesh, Eritrea, Ghana, Indonesia, Jordan, Nigeria, and Thailand are covered, along with well-known and major senders like China, Dominican Republic, India, Jamaica, Mexico, and Taiwan. All are covered in great detail. Readers can easily search for a country and find information under topic sections within the country essay. Most essays are from 10,000 to 20,000 words each, with scholars, many from the nations being discussed, providing knowledgeable analyses of the countries. Authors include sociologists, historians, anthropologists, political scientists, geog- raphers, ethnic studies experts, and other social scientists. Each author was asked to divide the essay into seven categories followed by appendices. The main cat- egories are Background , covering geography and history Causes and Waves of Migration , focusing on early and later immigration, especially after 1965 Demo- graphic Profile , concentrating on population size, age, educational and economic attainment, and health Adjustment and Adaptation , centering on family, life-cycle rituals, changing gender relations, links to the ancestral home, social organizations, religion, language, the ethnic press, food, music, and holidays. Section 5, Integra- tion and Impact on U.S. Society and Culture , depicts the immigrant groupÊs path toward citizenship, intergroup relations, forging an American identity, political