The Immigrant Experience – Assimilation Essay

The Immigrant Experience – Assimilation            Assimilation is a process of bringing together or integrating of people of one identity or group with people of another identity or group.  Today one of the biggest concerns of any group that would be immigrating into a new country and a new socio-cultural environment is their ability to assimilate in the new environment.            One of the major first movements towards between assimilation of immigrant populations in the US was the introduction of the Immigrant Act 1965.  Newer populations would try to form clusters in new geographical areas.

  This would ensure that the new communities are able to meet some of their socio-cultural needs, but on the whole it would seriously obstruct assimilation.  Besides, illegal immigrants are not able to freely assimilate as legal immigrants.  Many of the immigrants belong to the socio-economic groups, and hence may not be able to assimilate freely with the higher end groups in the US.  However, in comparison to the other nations in the world, assimilation occurs much better in the US.  People from various groups, races, religions and languages are able to assimilate and function more effectively in the US (Baglien 2009).            A study was conducted by the Manhattan Institute for Policy Research to determine the rate at which various populations in the US are assimilating.  They found that several groups are assimilating at a rate similar to that of the 1990’s, but today these races have doubled their numbers.

  Some races are assimilating faster than the others.  The Mexican and other Latin American groups are assimilating much more slowly in spite of being the largest immigrant population in the US.  About 20 million out of the 40 million immigrants are Latin Americans.  The exact reasons for the poor assimilation abilities of the Latin Americans have not been understood clearly, but several factors including greater bulk of immigrants (as new comers who are different from Americans are larger in numbers), language problems, poor socio-economic status, cultural differences, presence of larger Latino communities in the US, poor educational levels, etc, may play a vital role in determining assimilation (El Nasser 2008).

            Studies have shown people who have migrated 25 years back, have assimilated at a faster rate than those today (El Nasser 2008).  Hence efforts should be made to determine the rate at which assimilation occurs and the reason for poor assimilation.  This is vital for the formation of a global community.Work CitedEl Nasser, Haya.

“Study: Some immigrants assimilate faster.” 13 May 2008. USA Today. 4 January 2009. http://www.usatoday.com/news/nation/2008-05-13-assimilation_N.

htmBaglien, Jessie. “A New Definition of Assimilation.” 7 November 2008. University of Minnesota. 4 January 2009. http://blog.lib.umn.edu/erikalee/hsem3038/2008/11/a_new_definition_of_assimilati.html