Paths to Inclusion: The Integration of Migrants in the United States and Germany

Paths to Inclusion: The Integration of Migrants in the United States and Germany

Paths to Inclusion: The Integration of Migrants in the United States and Germany

Paths to Inclusion: The Integration of Migrants in the United States and Germany

Synopsis

This book considers the ensemble of institutions, laws and social practices which are designed to facilitate the integration of immigrants and refugees into the receiving country after they arrive.

Excerpt

The United States and Germany are now the world's two largest recipients of immigrants. This commonality, which only emerged in the postwar period, provides a rich opportunity to compare the ways in which the two countries think about and approach the problem of inclusion and integration of migrants. Most Americans view themselves as descendants of immigrants, and large-scale immigration is an integral part of the United States' history, culture, politics, and self-understanding. For Germany; immigration marks a sharp departure from -- indeed a reversal of -- the historical pattern. Most Germans still see their country as an ethnically defined nation-state. This is one reason why ethnic Germans from the former Soviet Union are still admitted despite other policies designed to limit the current inflow of new immigrants.

Immigration thus poses an old challenge for the United States and an altogether new one for Germany. Moreover, the social, legal, economic, and political institutions for dealing with these challenges in the two countries are quite different. In this volume, we shall explore these differences and their implications for the integration of migrants in the United States and Germany. In the course of doing so, however, we shall also find some important and perhaps surprising areas of convergence.

During the nineteenth century and the first half of the twentieth, Germany was a country of mass emigration, sending some 90 percent of its overseas migrants to the United States . . .

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