Approaches to Immigration

In Oscar Handlins, Immigration Portrayed as an experience of Uprootedness, peasants were the start to the modern movement of immigration. People were looking for more opportunities. The old structure of society was ruined after innovations in social governance. Peasants were the backbone of Europe, Ireland, and Russia. They didn’t change even with radical changes in society and government. The peasants were agriculturists. Family was important, there was value to it in the community. The village was a knotted firm relationship. Relationships within the village were those of a clan. Intermarriage and relationships rely on a functional society. The family, being functional, varied somewhat to suit the order of local conditions. Emigration began the modern era of the peasant life in Europe. The men who did emigrate had a culture shock, if he survived. For many people it was their first time away from home. Peasants were not accustomed to meeting different races, speaking new languages, and living in a new environment. Hope was what drove these people. Hope for a better government, more equal and fair. Peasants were tired of living under the rule of kings. But, with this people used tradition as a guide. Peasants rely on tested knowledge of the past. To use the experiences that were learned in a village were hard to apply to life in America. The American view led immigrants to the acceptance of tradition and authority. Social order was encouraged in every society


In John Bodnars, Immigration Portrayed as an Experience and Transplantation, states that the search for capitalism and its use of social order is often misunderstood with immigration. The working class and middle class were the two types of American immigrants. The middle class composed of people who pursued personal gain and leadership. These people supported the ideas of capitalism. Loyalty in politics and public life including government officials, educators and even reformers and placed a high value on individual freedom, personal gain, political power, and an improved future. Below the middle class stood the working class. These people were looking for the American dream. All of these people as a collective though created a relationship on a system where ideas, values, and behavior give meaning to their society and provides a balanced, understood culture in which people can act and live in. There was a lack of understand though with this new capitalistic government between the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. To grasp these new traditions and understandings a new culture was formed. People of all different cultures and backgrounds are what formed this new culture. But with this culture came limitations, the past and the present were taken into consideration and this was a new culture that people had to take into consideration about things. Immigrants of America used there old traditions and new experiences to embrace something new.


In Rudolph J. Vecoli, From the Uprooted to the Transplanted, he talks about the influence of immigration on the American lifestyle. What comes from these people with all different backgrounds also comes new ways of thinking and going through life. There have even been negative influences on the American culture, including communism, enslavement, racism, ect. From all of this grew a historical consciousness throughout the entire country. From this certain groups understood that in the American culture there is no one way. Groups were formed, people had new and more opportunities because there was no rooted past to go off of. There was a new understanding of individualism. The study of immigration became widespread throughout the world. Ellis Island, a national image, representing all of the people that came to America for a new start symbolized the value of immigration in America. With this new found significance and understanding of immigration, there were more studies on how immigration impacted not only American, but the world, the economy, politics, culture, ect. The study of migration and its impact on society, and economics became of value to historians with the creation of a capitalistic government. Chain-migration increased based on economic rationality in which migrants responded mechanically to labor markets. Studies were also done on the effects of ethnic concentrations in particular industries on differential rates of return. New social histories became apparent, including, family history, social history, religious history, labor history, women’s history, ect. Community studies also became more apparent in historical studies. The understanding of the urban background and what societies were in those areas, what were their main forms of income, what cities were different races centralized in? With these studies there is a clearer understanding of the American identity, what has affected and changed the course of our future with our past? With the values and customs that immigrants had and carried over from other countries to America is what shaped the culture.

The Pursuit of History – Dani Brown

In John Tosh’s, The Pursuit of History, Aims, methods and new directions in the study of modern history, the chapter on historical awareness draws on the importance of people’s experiences, memory, and awareness, with the purpose of uncovering the past to explain it and understand it, in the most accurate historical setting. As humans, we hold an obligation to the past, to understand the relationship between events over time, which endows more significance; this process is also known as historical process. Through this process there also holds a social memory, which reflects the rationale of popular knowledge about the past. Tradition, nostalgia, and progress provide basic constituents of social memory. Academic historians may distance themselves from the distortions of social memory, but use it to further their understanding of the past.


Further on in reading John Tosh’s, the Pursuit of History, the chapter; The Uses of History go into more detail about how history become more of a study. Before the history became used at a study, people believed that nothing could be learned from it and that it offers no guidance. The second rejection of history was that people held a commitment to modernity. Why bother with the past when you could just move forward to the future. But, some people believe that our destiny is disclosed in the trajectory of human history, which reveals the world as it really is, and the future course of events, also known as metahistory. More of an understanding of the course of human development and everything that goes with it. With this understanding also comes denial, history in peoples eyes was somewhat of an accident. Events that had happened in the past that were understood as wrong by people were defined as something to forget and push aside. Why bother with the past when there future is ahead? Marxism, is what sparked the attention of most people. What could people learn from the past to enhance their future? Historical difference also plays a role in what is socially relevant. There are millions of things to study in this world and there is a history about all of it. From the study of art, to economics and architecture, all of this is studied through understanding the context. Through context we learn that history does not repeat itself, and with any historical process it is easier for people to identify how to explain our past. History provides people with an education and understanding of ourselves in time. It teaches us how we got to the place we are today, and without our past the future would not have any path.

About Me!

Being raised under a prodigy such as Jeremy Brown, the influence of music and art was always surrounding me. Jeremy Brown, my father, first put a flute in my hands at the age of 10. Private lessons to my first band class I always was practicing. My passion then only continued and grew moving from my 6th grade graduation band performance, to middle school where I competed in my first solo competition. I was fortunate enough to have played for my high school in which I was able to travel and perform in various interesting locations. The flute has given me the opportunity to experience the world and shape the individual that I am now. Traveling on my own gave me a unique perspective of the world and a sense of independence, I felt a sense of adventure from my first performance in New York City at Carnegie Hall. But that was just a first step to what really inspired my life was when I was able to perform in a small church in Barcelona, Spain. The trip to Spain had to be one of the most eye opening experiences of my life because it introduce any incredibly foreign and beautiful culture. I had never traveled outside of the country before and had always been a little intimidated by the idea. I was overwhelmed with the beauty immediately mostly due to making our first stop in Spain at infamous Park Guell. . The beautiful unique tile and stone features that were spread throughout the park made me recognize the culture physically and it was colorful and bright. Especially with the park being on an elevated area at the top of the city with a perfect panoramic overlooking of the city. Just being able walking through the beautiful gothic streets of Barcelona all the way to one of the famous local markets surrounding the Sagrada Familia. This enormously couture building, absolutely one of the most beautiful churches in the world, which is still in the process of being built today. The famous architect Gaudi designed many beautiful buildings all throughout Barcelona, but is known for the Sagrada Familia because of the detail and the work to put into the building. While traveling from Barcelona to Madrid we traveled on train and got to see the beautiful countryside. There was a vast amount of countryside, cities did not meet for miles. Three or four families made up each town, and when I related it to how I was brought up I in that moment lost sight of myself a bit.


I thought about where I came from, Virginia and what surrounded me in my present and in that spot what had happened there 10 years ago, or even one hundred years ago. Living in Northern Virginia also sparked my interest in knowing if there had been any Civil War battles or Revolutionary War battles that had taken place in my backyard. Having divorced parents made it especially easy to travel and move all around the D.C. area. From Great Falls, to Fairfax Station I moved around everywhere in the D.C. area. My Fairfax house had to be the most unique of them all, hidden in the woods, surrounded by forest, and located on a old camp and field hospital from the Battle of Bull Run in Manassas. The wounded were brought by train to the end of my street where the train station was located. The whole area had 1000s of wounded soldiers, and was one of the first places Clara Barton started the Red Cross. To learn about and understand the past historical events that had taken place under my feet gave me more of an understanding about life. Our past creates our present, and it is important to not only understand but also learn from our history The opportunities and experiences that I have had because of the flute have created me into the person I am today.