Magazine article Editor & Publisher

The Hubbub in Boston

Magazine article Editor & Publisher

The Hubbub in Boston

Article excerpt

In South Boston, pet salons and espresso cafEs are signs that the gentry are moving in. At St. Matthew's, a church built by Irish immigrants, French is spoken today for the benefit of its Haitian parishioners. This year, Thomas M. Menino, Boston's first non-Irish mayor in more than 60 years, made his state-of-the-city speech available in six languages.

Recently, when Boston historian Thomas H. O'Connor was working on the third edition of his 1976 book, "Bibles, Brahmins and Bosses: A Short History of Boston," he realized the old title no longer applied, and ended up calling it "The Hub," an 1850s reference to Boston. Boston's religious, political, and class lines, once thought to be immutable, have evolved.

When white Bostonians moved out of neighborhoods such as Dorchester and the South End, immigrants from Asia, Latin America, and the Caribbean Basin moved in. Today, whites barely hold a majority, and one in five Bostonians are foreign-born. The shift is strikingly evident in the Catholic parishes, where Mass is celebrated in 27 languages.

Neither The Boston Globe nor the Boston Herald has gotten a handle on how to connect with Boston's diverse immigrant population, which, unlike the city's Irish immigrants of old, don't share a common language. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.