AMCULT 304 - American Immigration
Winter 2023, Section 001
Instruction Mode: Section 001 is  In Person (see other Sections below)
Subject: American Culture (AMCULT)
Department: LSA American Culture
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Requirements & Distribution:
Advisory Prerequisites:
One introductory course in Sociology or American Culture.
May not be repeated for credit.
Primary Instructor:
Start/End Date:
Full Term 1/4/23 - 4/18/23 (see other Sections below)
NOTE: Drop/Add deadlines are dependent on the class meeting dates and will differ for full term versus partial term offerings.
For information on drop/add deadlines, see the Office of the Registrar and search Registration Deadlines.


That America is a nation of immigrants is one of the most common, yet truest, of statements. In this course we will survey a vast range of the American immigrant experience: that of the Irish, Germans, Jews, Italians, Chinese, Japanese, Blacks, Puerto Ricans, Cubans, and Mexicans. Immigration to America can be broadly understood as consisting of four major waves:

  • the first one, that which consisted of Northwest Europeans who immigrated up to the mid-19th century
  • the second one, that which consisted of Southern and East Europeans at the end of the 19th century and beginning of the 20th
  • the third one, the movement from the south to the north of Black Americans and Mexicans precipitated by the two world wars
  • the fourth one, from 1965 on, is still ongoing in the present, of immigrants mostly from Latin America and Asia.

At all times, our effort is to understand the immigrant past of these ethnic groups, both for what it tells us about the past as well as their present and possible future.

Course Requirements:

The requirements for this class consist of two essay exams (blue books, in class) comparing and contrasting a couple of immigrant groups along an important issue; and a final research paper (about 20-25 pages long), both drawing from lectures and readings.

In the research paper the topic is your family’s history as the immigrant social history of a particular ethnic/racial group that unfolded over the course of a number of generations. The central question that will help guide you is whether the experience of your own family was typical or not. The paper should tell your family’s story as an immigrant family, 1) assessing the reasons for their migration to the U.S. as well as 2) the extent to which they experienced cultural and structural assimilation in America.

Both the exams will be in-class tests, consisting of one essay and a few short-answer questions that will draw from the lectures, the documentaries, and the discussion of the readings.

Intended Audience:

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Class Format:

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AMCULT 304 - American Immigration
Schedule Listing
001 (LEC)
 In Person
TuTh 10:00AM - 11:30AM
1/4/23 - 4/18/23
002 (DIS)
 In Person
Th 4:00PM - 5:00PM
1/4/23 - 4/18/23
003 (DIS)
 In Person
Th 5:00PM - 6:00PM
1/4/23 - 4/18/23
004 (DIS)
 In Person
Th 6:00PM - 7:00PM
1/4/23 - 4/18/23

Textbooks/Other Materials

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