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Paper Two Option Two

by: Amneris Santiago

Paper Two Option Two PHIL 110

Amneris Santiago
GPA 3.2

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About this Document

I did my paper on Immigrants in the United States, This could be used as a layout, or if you needed motivation or help interpreting anything. I got a solid B on this!
Introduction to Philosophy
A. Nachtigal
Study Guide
history, Interpreting, american, past, USA, His, Merica
50 ?




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This 7 page Study Guide was uploaded by Amneris Santiago on Thursday February 4, 2016. The Study Guide belongs to PHIL 110 at Old Dominion University taught by A. Nachtigal in Summer 2015. Since its upload, it has received 24 views. For similar materials see Introduction to Philosophy in PHIL-Philosophy at Old Dominion University.


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Date Created: 02/04/16
Santiago 1▯ Amneris Santiago Emily Moore Interpreting TheAmerican Past November 6th, 2015 Immigrants in the United States United States which is known toAmericans as, “The land of the free, and home of the brave,” immigrants, in retrospect could not say the same. United States prides itself on diversity, however, immigrants did not and still do not have it easy.Americans have the tendency to see someone of the opposite race, and most likely have nothing but abominable thoughts. First generation immigrants faced a lot of ridicule based on facts thatAmericans did not truly know. As stated previously, it was not easy for immigrants from different countries to live in the United States due to many different challenges inAmerican society itself. Immigrants faced numerous challenges, one of which is the horrendous living conditions. In document 18.1,Anzia Yezierska talks about going to work in New York, and how she will stay with friends or strangers that live in the city to avoid the high cost of constant transportation. Her dad is completely against it, not only for the fact thats she’s going away to work, but also the fact that she was willing to do anything, and stray away from her culture. This shows what it meant for immigrants likeAnzia to be in the United States, you must assimilate to the culture. Being an immigrant meant that you had to work harder than others in order to prosper. Immigrants lived in tight, or starving poor like living conditions, while working for low wages. Immigrants come to the United States not only for a better life, but better opportunities.As depicted in documents 18.2 and 18.7, it is illustrated that a lot ofAmerican citizens did not want immigrants to be Santiago 2▯ around. “Critics of late-nineteenth-century immigration often relied on the germ theory of disease in their arguments for stricter immigration laws.”(Document 18.2)Although the document 18.2 displays an image in which the wall is welcoming the poor immigrant, all other signs show that he is not truly welcomed. Uncle Sam has his nose covered, and the argument of disease and poverty arises, which are portrayed as his bags, considered, “baggage.” In document 18.7 this image showcases the Chinese ExclusionAct.Although welcoming every other race, it is kicking out Chinese due to the belief that they are incapable of conforming toAmerican tradition. The Chinese ExclusionAct forced those Chinese that were already in the country to carry a certification of identity and residence, displaying that the United States felt “…inhuman throwing them out now…-“ but that it would be better, “…in the future to keep his brothers out.”(Document 18.7) The cartoon also proposes that some of these earlier immigrants harbored anti-Chinese feelings. There is a note that an IrishAmerican is holding up which reads, “Kick out the Heathen; He’s Got No Vote.” Immigrants are only welcomed if they transition to the American culture, and while they left their homes for freedom, and better living, they did not want to change who they are. Ironically, although some did in fact change, they were still looked down upon. Moreover, the attitude towards immigrants were not all the same, and fluctuated between those who welcomed immigrants versus those who wanted them all gone. In document 18.6, David Quixano, “a jewish immigrant and musician, writes a symphony about racial and ethic harmony created by the assimilation of immigrant groups inAmerica at the turn of the twentieth century.” In this document, David explains the process of assimilation to this love Vera, and his Uncle. David is one of the few immigrants willing to conform to what society wanted of him, Santiago 3▯ and saw assimilation as a form a peace. He sees all these different cultures as gangs, filled with hate, and rivalry. He seesAmerica as one of the best opportunities and is willing to freely give up where he came from in order to be accepted into theAmerican norm. In contrast to what David believed, in document 18.8,Alfred P. Schultz believed that the mixing of races produced a “mongrel civilization and inevitably led to the decay of a nation.” Schultz believed that the mixing of races prevented races from completely flourishing like they are “supposed” to. The argument of immigration bringing disease and poverty, once again arises and is blamed on immigrants. Schultz further slanders immigrants by calling them “degenerates.” He blames promiscuousness on the immigrants, and blame them for creating a “degenerate race, which is one that is no longer valued for the same internal worth…” Schultz is calling them filthy and a mistake ofAmerica for even letting them in. Schultz is strongly against immigrants and whole- heartedly believed that you cannot train any immigrant to change who they are. In contrast to both views, an indifferent perspective comes to play. In document 18.9, Randolph S. Bourne, a journalist and political activist, “took a middle position on the issue of dividing those calling for assimilation and those seeking to curtail immigration.” Bourne brings attention to the fact that colonists came over with motives no less colonial than the later. They did not come to be assimilated in an “American melting-pot.” Colonist did not come to adopt the culture of the American Indian. Colonists back in the day, came with the same intentions that immigrants are coming in for; freedom to live where they wanted to. Immigrants “…came to make their fortune in a new land.” Immigrants came to this new old with nothing except their own customs that they brought from home with them. Bourne believes thatAmericans should merely just work with what they have and “make something out of this trans-national spirit instead of outlawing it.” Santiago 4▯ Bourne wanted to make the best out of the experience of having diversity and did not want to shun the idea of a new captivating culture. Bourne questions the fact that immigrants are being forced to learn theAmerican ways and be stripped from their identities, however,Americans do no try to learn their way of living or understanding. To further draw the image of inequality that immigrants faced, document 18.10, explains further discrimination that was not only faced by just immigrants, butAfrican-Americans. Jacob Riis is best known for writing about eastern European immigrants living in crowded tenements. Riis explains that racism even goes as far as trying to find a living space.AfricanAmericans were offered the short end of the stick when it came to living spaces. Landlords often only rented out to whites, or Europeans who had white appearance and complexions. Landlords also could not sell a home of a previousAfrican- American owner to white folk, due to the fact that no one wanted it and the market value had to be lowered. “Black” tenants are also charged way more for a living space although agents have admitted time and time again that they are much “cleaner, orderly and profitable” than white folk. Overall, the attitudes towards immigrants andAfricanAmericans were revolting and immoral. Furthermore, the perception of the creators’likeAnzia Yerzierska, influenced the American society.Anzia Yerzierska, is a jewish immigrant herself. The main character in her novel Bread Givers, is based on herself and discusses her trials of getting out from under her father’s thumb. In document 18.1, From Yerzierska’s point of view,America is an escape from the “old world.” Back where Yerzierska is from you need a man to “enter heaven.” You must be dependent, and cannot live without a father or husband. Yerzierska wanted nothing more than to be an independentAmerican women, and left the house of her father to further prove the point of Santiago 5▯ her wanting to conform. In addition in Yerzierska’s feelings ofAmericanization, in document 18.6, David Quixano, feels the same way. Quixano as described earlier, is talking to his lover. They both see theAmerican society as a “melting pot.”Amelting pot basically means that all immigrants are put together, and meant to come outAmerican. They are meant to be assimilated and conformed, stripped away from what they used to be once. Quixano believes that immigrants make upAmerica, and that immigrants are to follow the traditions that were set before them. Quixano and Yerzierska both see coming toAmerica for a new beginning as a blessing and both love the concept of being able to not only grow as people, but to grow asAmericans.Another example of influencingAmerican society would be document 18.9 with Randolph S. Bourne. Bourne agreed that immigrants should be taught to live anAmerican culture.Although immigrants obviously, aren’t reallyAmerican, he believed that they should learn more about the country that they came to live in. Bourne does not feel as if they should be assimilated however, Bourne feels like they should be self-willing to adapt to their environment. Bourne also argues that whileAmericans are pushing their culture down the throats of immigrants, they should take a gander at what the culture of the immigrants might have to offer to theAmericans. Bourne states thatAmericans should see and utilize what is in front of them instead of merely shoving it away because it is different. Change is not bad, Bourne, Quixano, and Yerzierka all understood that. In conclusion, although not everyone was against immigration, a good portion of Americans did not welcome them. Immigrants to this day still have to continuously fight for better living, and freedom. Immigration will most likely never stop, however, the United States has gotten better at adapting to different cultures and has not been driven to oblivion. Immigrants Santiago 6▯ daily are conforming as well to the environment that they are living in. Immigrants are following customs that were once foreign to them, and are trying to reach what they came here for, the American dream. Word Count:1,632 Santiago 7▯ Works Cited (Document 18.1, “Immigrant Fathers and Daughters, 1925” Hewitt and Lawson, Exploring American Histories, 567) (Document 18.2, “The Stranger at Our Gates, 1899” Hewitt and Lawson, ExploringAmerican Histories, 569) (Document 18.6, “The Melting-Pot, 1908” Hewitt and Lawson, ExploringAmerican Histories, 583) (Document 18.7, “Be Just-Even to John Chinaman, 1893” Hewitt and Lawson, Exploring American Histories, 584) (Document 18.8, “The Mongrelization ofAmerica, 1908” Hewitt and Lawson, Exploring American Histories, 585) (Document 18.9, “Trans-nationalAmerica, 1916” Hewitt and Lawson, ExploringAmerican Histories, 586) (Document 18.10, “The Color Line in New York, 1891” Hewitt and Lawson, Exploring American Histories, 588)


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