Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Hostile environments encourage political action in immigrant communities, study finds

Date:
November 2, 2010
Source:
North Carolina State University
Summary:
A new study finds that anti-immigrant practices -- such as anti-immigrant legislation or protests -- are likely to backfire, and spur increased political action from immigrant communities. The study examined political activity in 52 metropolitan areas across the United States.

A new study from North Carolina State University finds that anti-immigrant practices -- such as anti-immigrant legislation or protests -- are likely to backfire, and spur increased political action from immigrant communities. The study examined political activity in 52 metropolitan areas across the United States.

Related Articles


"U.S. Census data indicate that 60 percent of the foreign-born in the U.S. are not citizens," says Dr. Kim Ebert, an assistant professor of sociology and co-author of a paper describing the research. "Non-citizens can't vote, so we wanted to determine how they are participating in political life."

Specifically, the researchers examined the number of protests from the immigrant community in metropolitan areas during the year 2000, to investigate the extent to which local conditions affect an immigrant community's willingness to take part in informal political action. The immigrant communities in the study reflect a range of backgrounds, including Latino, Asian American, Middle Eastern and African communities.

"Metropolitan areas that saw high levels of anti-immigrant activity, such as anti-immigrant protests or abusive practices, were subsequently more likely to see protest activity from the immigrant community," Ebert says. "In addition, metro areas in states that passed anti-immigrant legislation often saw a short-term dampening effect on protests -- but experienced significant increases in the number of political protests from immigrant communities in the long term."

Similarly, exclusionary metropolitan areas -- those with high levels of housing and employment segregation between immigrant and U.S.-born communities -- were also subject to more protests than areas that were better integrated. Moreover, protest was less likely to be used as a strategy for social change in inclusionary metropolitan areas where immigrants had greater access to formal means of political and social participation via citizenship, college education and voting.

"The more people try to create heightened boundaries between 'us' and 'them,' the more mobilized the immigrant community becomes," Ebert says.

The researchers also found that mobilization in the immigrant community was less likely to occur in metropolitan areas with higher immigrant growth rates. For example, many metropolitan areas that saw significant increases in their immigrant populations between 1991 and 2000 -- such as Memphis, Tenn., and Greenville, N.C. -- did not see any immigrant protest activity. However, traditional immigrant gateway cities with modest growth rates -- such as Chicago, Los Angeles and Miami -- saw significantly more frequent protest activity from the immigrant community.

The researchers are currently examining longitudinal data from 1990 to 2010 to investigate how political, demographic and social changes influence immigrant organizing.

The paper, "Beyond the Ballot: Immigrant Collective Action in Gateways and New Destinations in the United States," will be published in the November issue of the journal Social Problems. The lead author on the paper is Dr. Dina Okamoto of the University of California, Davis. The research was funded by the National Science Foundation, the Russell Sage Foundation and the American Sociological Association.

NC State's Department of Sociology and Anthropology is a joint department of the university's College of Humanities and Social Sciences and College of Agriculture and Life Sciences.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by North Carolina State University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Dina Okamoto, Kim Ebert. Beyond the Ballot: Immigrant Collective Action in Gateways and New Destinations in the United States. Social Problems, 2010; 57 (4): 529 DOI: 10.1525/sp.2010.57.4.529

Cite This Page:

North Carolina State University. "Hostile environments encourage political action in immigrant communities, study finds." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 2 November 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101102101629.htm>.
North Carolina State University. (2010, November 2). Hostile environments encourage political action in immigrant communities, study finds. ScienceDaily. Retrieved March 30, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101102101629.htm
North Carolina State University. "Hostile environments encourage political action in immigrant communities, study finds." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101102101629.htm (accessed March 30, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Science & Society News

Monday, March 30, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

The Future Of Japanese Whaling: Heritage Vs. Conservation

The Future Of Japanese Whaling: Heritage Vs. Conservation

Newsy (Mar. 30, 2015) — In 2014, the International Court of Justice ruled Japan could no longer engage in whaling in the Antarctic, but Japan has plans to return this year. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Soda, Salt and Sugar: The Next Generation of Taxes

Soda, Salt and Sugar: The Next Generation of Taxes

Washington Post (Mar. 30, 2015) — Denisa Livingston, a health advocate for the Dinι Community Advocacy Alliance, and the Post&apos;s Abby Phillip discuss efforts around the country to make unhealthy food choices hurt your wallet as much as your waistline. Video provided by Washington Post
Powered by NewsLook.com
UnitedHealth Buys Catamaran

UnitedHealth Buys Catamaran

Reuters - Business Video Online (Mar. 30, 2015) — The $12.8 billion merger will combine the U.S.&apos; third and fourth largest pharmacy benefit managers. Analysts say smaller PBMs could also merge. Fred Katayama reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Lights out for Earth Hour

Lights out for Earth Hour

Reuters - News Video Online (Mar. 29, 2015) — Landmarks in cities around the globe turn off their lights to mark Earth Hour. Paul Chapman reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Science & Society

Business & Industry

Education & Learning

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins