Nigerian Immigrants in the United States: Race, Identity, and Acculturation

Article excerpt

Nigerian Immigrants in the United States: Race, Identity, and Acculturation.

By Ezekiel Umo Ette. Lanham, Md.: Lexington Books, 2011. Pp. xii, 191. $60/37.95. [pounds sterling]

Nigerian Immigrants in the United States is a refreshing read. The book focuses on the experience of Nigerian immigrants in the United States and their interpretation of this experience, an approach the author refers to as phenomenological, or one of qualitative social research (p. 53). It is based on case studies of individual immigrants who discuss why they left Nigeria, what their experiences in the United States have been, and whether they see it as a good decision to have come to the States.

The central question of the book is, How do the immigrants themselves interpret their experiences in their new society? Answering this question generates others, such as, Who are these Nigerians who have left their homeland? What has been their experience? and How has their experience shaped them and their understanding of the immigration process? Finally, it asks, "What can we learn from this experience?" (p. xi). The case samples include Nigerians who have come as students, as spouses, as permanent visitors, and as visa lottery winners.

The author discusses lessons learned in these case studies in the context of historical, theoretical, and general principles of immigration to the United States. …