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Not Like Us: Immigrants and Minorities in America, 1890-1924 (American Ways Series)

3.5 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-1566631662
ISBN-10: 1566631661
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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

The years covered by this book were the greatest era for immigration in the United States, and Not Like Us serves as a reminder that immigrant ships were often not a welcome sight on the horizon. Roger Daniels, a professor of history at the University of Cincinnati, begins the book with the story of the passage of the Chinese Exclusion Act, a law which curtailed Chinese immigration and served as a model for later U.S. immigration law. In successive chapters Daniels documents how various immigrant groups came to America, and how anti-immigrant feelings gradually intensified. Eventually the reactionary forces turned not only on recent arrivals, but on African Americans and Native Americans, and the early decades of the 20th century, far from being a halcyon time, were marked by ethnic strife and occasional full-fledged race riots in America. Not Like Us is a concise, straightforward, and unsentimental history of immigration to America, and it serves as a welcome antidote to some romantic misconceptions about the American past. --Robert McNamara

Review

A readable history of ethnic minorities and immigrants . . . powerful. (Maxine D. Jones Journal of Southern History)

Lucid and effective . . . Daniels maps out the contradictions and inequities which characterize legislation enacted against the socially defined 'other.' (Immigrants and Minorities)
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Product Details

  • Series: American Ways Series
  • Paperback: 192 pages
  • Publisher: Ivan R. Dee (September 1, 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1566631661
  • ISBN-13: 978-1566631662
  • Product Dimensions: 5.3 x 0.6 x 8.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #622,845 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Format: Hardcover
During almost four centuries of immigration to America, few eras were more fascinating than the two or three decades preceding the First World War. The social tumult caused by the arrival of millions of southern and eastern Europeans was never to be repeated on quite such a scale. This book captures some of the excitement of the age and gives an insight into why, by the early 1920s, there was a "nativist" reaction. Alas, its lively, liberal-minded arguments are not always on the right track. Explaining the rise of anti-German sentiment, for example, it is wrong to accuse the British and French of inventing stories of First World War atrocities committed by Germans in Belgium. Such atrocities undoubtedly took place - in the historic university town of Louvain, for starters. Had this book been longer, it could have tackled such matters with greater sophistication.
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Format: Paperback
The compilers of this great book deserve cudos, including for exposing the British propaganda hoaxes of World War I and their baleful role in increasing hatred against German-Americans. The burning of Louvain, e.g., happened in the chaotic struggle against partisans, it was an overreaction, but not a planned atrocity, on the level of the British army burning parts of Dublin in 1916. Anyhow, I teach US history and immigration courses, and strongly endorse that book.
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