Anglo Conformity A Theory Of Assimilation History Essay
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Published: Mon, 5 Dec 2016
Anglo-conformity is one of the theories of assimilation involving the position and idea that immigrants should learn English, adapt to numerous norms, values and institutions as a way of conformity to integral Anglo-American society and the wider Anglo-Saxon majority. The United States, which was founded by European immigrants, did develop concepts in an attempt to explain what it meant to be an American. Many immigrants did make efforts in their pursuit to become Americans through Anglo-conformity model of assimilation. The cultural values and customs of the immigrants did change to accommodate the English language, civic rituals and American culture. Since more and more immigrants poured into the U.S, the Anglo-conformity model was used as a reinforcement of the immigration act of 1924. An example of Anglo-conformity assimilation was establishment of national quotas favoring Northwestern Europe immigrants and excluding Asian immigrants (Chinese Exclusion Act, 1882). Such requirements for immigrants to abandon their culture and maintain the homogeneous American did help in achieving acculturation but structural assimilation was not successful because of intermarriages between majority and minority groups.
The Melting-pot Ideology
The concept was used in America’s utopian visions towards the emergence of a virtuous community. The fusion of different cultures, races, ethnicities and nationalities through an idealized process led to this new ideal republic. This process is also known as acculturation or cultural assimilation through which different cultures and ethnicities are melted to attain homogeneous American culture. The increase in numbers of European immigrants into the U.S was substantial and diverse in late nineteenth century. Large numbers of immigrant groups such as Jews, poles and Italians arrived (start of 1890s) but were to merge their cultures through the cultural melting pot hence accepting American lifestyles. Such requirements were seen as undesirable and attracted many heated debates especially from opponents of this process. As a response, U.S established a considerable number of immigration laws (1920s) restricting the number of immigrants through national quotas.
Ideology of Cultural Pluralism
Since the start of 20th century, the American liberalism had a dominant goal in that, minorities especially immigrants had to be assimilated into exclusive American life. However, cultural pluralism ideology created a situation whereby different society’s cultures co-existed exhibiting respect and mutual tolerance. Cultural pluralism is considered by liberalists as being democratic, equal, fair and a dominant concept of modern society. The ideology advocates for the peaceful co-existence under a democratic framework of different communities having different traditions, values and beliefs. The mass immigrants into the United States resulted into enormous tensions across the political culture and the entire American society. However, with issues such as World wars and capitalism opposition, the ethnic and racial diversity did receive increased levels of intolerance. With time this cultural pluralism did get support in the American society. For instance, the Congress in 2003 established the Office of Citizenship in the Department of Homeland Security. Its work is to revive and emphasize the essentials of citizenship such as shared values and common civic identity.
The 1943 Magnuson Act
The California Gold Rush during 1849 saw large numbers of Chinese coming to America. In order to control this trend, restriction on free immigration was significantly administered through the enactment of the Chinese Exclusion Act. Chinese employees whether skilled or unskilled could not enter the United States for the next ten years, deportation, and imprisonment penalties could be done on offenders. However, the Magnuson Act of 1943 did repeal the Chinese Exclusion Act allowing 105 Chinese immigrants annually subject to the national quota. Chinese nationals already living in U.S did get permission to be naturalized citizens after the passage of the act. The Immigration Act of 1965 did allow Chinese immigrants to enter the country in large-scale numbers.
PART II – SHORT ESSAYS
Racial naturalization by Devon Carbado
This refers to the way all the people (Non-Americans) are Americanized through a wide social practice. In addition, racial categorization plays an integral part in making non-Americans socially intelligible. The naturalization process used for all people to become Americans is racism. This naturalization process has a structure whereby the law formulates the racial terms. Devon did develop an analysis whereby, efforts to resist this naturalization process were futile considering that he was of Negro identity and had to undergo the Americanization process. He develops the example of how black men faced serious difficulties in the context of police interactions. Living in a predominantly black neighborhood, Los Angeles, he had many police confrontations on suspicions of being a criminal, drug dealer, robber and many other illegalities. For instance, he and his brother were stopped by police when driving their new acquired car and subjected to unwarranted interrogations. This was an example of Americanization inherent with racial subjectivity on black Americans. In the analysis of forms of racial naturalization, Daven argues that, naturalization process is a way through which to produce American citizenship. Secondly, this naturalization process when applied in social terms results into American racial identities. Thus, racial formation goes hand in hand with Americanization. Based on exclusion and inclusion, we have American citizenship on one hand and American identity on the other. Citizenship is formal or legally based while identity is the capacity to be a representative body based on race. Asian Americans have not been able to acquire national identity and they lack representational capacity even those who are formal American citizens.
The development of Pacific war as a “race war”
The pacific war involving Japan, Asia countries and the Western powers was part of the Second World War. Some scholars have considered this war as a “race war” because of a number of reasons. The involved both sides did show significant degree of racism in relation to this war. First, Japan did act on racism basis in attacking the Americans, British and other Asian countries, which supported the Chinese and resisted their influence. Secondly, during this time, the Americans did harbor an affinity for Chinese hence; they were ready to attack the Japanese because of their brutal campaign against the Chinese. The widespread publicity of how the Chinese were suffering because of the Japanese attacks prompted the American altitude to launch counter attacks. Thirdly, the Japanese had the anti-colonial feelings in relation to western countries hence prepared to attack them or their colonial territories. Based on the above arguments, the war could further be examined in relation to human element of nation motivations, policy and ideology. Such elements make the pacific war to be classified as a race war involving rational policy subordination, primordial violence, enmity and hatred.
The Impacts of the Patriot Act
The U.S.A Patriotic Act signed into law on October 2001 had many provisions that brought many implications on U.S citizens, financial institutions, government security agencies as well as other people globally. Its passage was largely influenced by the September 11 terrorist attacks and the act contains substantial changes to federal legislation. Based on the need for increased security operations, there were many detentions of immigrants something many consider illegal. Since its passage, security crackdowns have targeted immigrants, blacks, Asians and people of Arab origin. Substantial number of people has been detained on suspicion of being terrorists or supporters of terrorist activities. The legislation allowing law enforcement officers to conduct businesses, homes and residential searches without occupants/owners’ knowledge or permission has created inconveniences. Some of the provisions have clearly brought forth negative effects on the lives of people. This is evidenced by the Federal courts after numerous legal challenges, ruling that, a number of provisions are indeed unconstitutional.
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