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 微文:CityReads│6 Books on Immigration
文首300字: 2606 Books on ImmigrationWe are all immigrants in origin.Source: https://fivebooks.com/category/politics-and-society/migration/Ian Goldin is Professor of Globalization and Development and Direc......(2019-11-08 21:00:00)

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CityReads│6 Books on Immigration


260


6 Books on Immigration


We are all immigrants in origin.

Source: https://fivebooks.com/category/politics-and-society/migration/


Ian Goldin is Professor of Globalization and Development and Director of the Oxford Martin School at the University of Oxford. He is the author of many books, including Exceptional People: How Migration Shaped Our World and Will Define Our Future, which I like a lot. In an interview with Fivebooks.com, Prof. Ian Goldin recommends and introduces five books on immigration. Together with Exceptional People, I highly recommend these six books for you to understand the field of immigration studies.


1 Bloody Foreigners: The Story of Immigration to Britain

 


It is the story of immigration into the United Kingdom over the last thousand years. The title reflects what every generation has said for the last thousand years, the constant refrain of how somehow they are the indigenous people and those coming are foreigners. What the story tells is how we imagine our own identities as being the identity of the country, but it’s just supplanted on top of someone else’s.


A thousand years ago, people didn’t speak English here, in England. More recently, Queen Victoria’s family were all German. She grew up speaking German, and yet we think of her as quintessentially English — the symbol of England and Englishness. So it’s about how we create these myths. It also shows how important foreigners were in creating all the successes that we associate with England and our heritage: including the Industrial Revolution and everything else. This book tells of the remarkable migrations that have founded and defined a nation. For example, “our aristocracy was created by a Frenchman, William the Conqueror, who also created our medieval architecture, our greatest artistic glory. Our royal family is German, our language a bizarre confection of Latin, Saxon and, latterly, Indian and American. Our shops and banks were created by Jews. We did not stand alone against Hitler; the empire stood beside us. And our food is, of course, anything but British.”So it’s very good at both showing how we create this idea of who an immigrant is and who is foreign and how vital they are to the society.


There are waves, and waves in which different groups are identified as the foreigners. The book talks about anti-Jewish sentiment at times, anti-Indian subcontinent at times, anti-German sentiment, anti-Polish sentiment etc. At other times, how they’re embraced. And how this changes over time. But yes, foreigners are generally not liked. 


2 Borderless Economics: Chinese Sea Turtles, Indian Fridges and the New Fruits of Global Capitalism
 


In Borderless Economics, Robert Guest, The Economist's Business Editor, travels through dozens of countries and 44 American states, is showing how immigrants are not only creating dynamism within a society, but investment networks and technology transfers. It’s a series of examples from different economies—China, the US, UK and others—in which he highlights how none of these investment flows, trade flows and innovation processes would happen without individual people that have moved and travelled. These immigrants become the catalysts of economic growth and change. He observes how these networks create wealth, spread ideas and foster innovation. He shows how:


Brainy Indians in America collaborate with brainy Indians in India to build $70 fridges and $300 houses


Young Chinese study in the West and then return home (where they're known as sea turtles), infecting China with ideas that will eventually change the country. It’s the story of the Chinese diaspora around the world and how they were able to bring ideas and investment back into China and how China’s transformation from Communism to an open, very dynamic, economy is dependent on this network, which has become stronger and stronger over time. You now have millions of Chinese around the world who are learning and sharing ideas and that has become a source of dynamism for the society.


The so-called brain drain - the flow of educated migrants from poorcountries to rich ones - actually reduces global poverty.


America's unique ability to attract and absorb migrants lets it tap into the energy of all the world's diaspora networks. So despite its current woes, if the United States keeps its borders open, it will remain the world's most powerful nation indefinitely.


3 The Age of Migration: International Population Movements in the Modern World

 
This is the classic textbook on immigration. Stephen Castles has been going since the 1970s or early 1980s. It’s a comprehensive view of how important immigration is, what drives it, push-pull theories and so on. It’s now in its fifth edition. This leading text in the field provides a comprehensive assessment of the nature, extent and dimensions of international population movements and of their consequences. Thoroughly revised and updated, the 5th edition assesses the impact of the global economic crisis for migration and includes new material on climate change and migration.


4 The Age of Mass Migration: Causes and Economic Impact

 


Williamson and Hatton are two great economic historians. About 55 million Europeans migrated to the New World between 1850 and 1914, landing in North and South America and in Australia. This movement, which marked a profound and permanent shift in global population and economic activity, is described in vivid detail by Timothy J. Hatton and Jeffrey G. Williamson, and the causes and effects relative to this great relocation are soundly analyzed. What it highlights is just the scale of that immigration. At times a third of Ireland, a third of Sweden, a third of southern Italy, was migrating. It also highlights how many went?—not only to the United States—but to South America, the mass migration to places like Argentina, which is often forgotten. It also highlights how many came back later, when conditions changed. For some of these destinations, in later years, a third of people returned. And it highlights the role of technology in all of this: it was really the steamship that allowed it to happen.


The Age of Mass Migration also offers a thorough treatment of a period of vital development in the economic history of the modern world and, moreover, devotes much objective consideration to certain economic questions that still baffle us today: Why does a nation's emigration rate typically rise with early industrialization? How do immigrants choose their destinations? Are international labor markets segmented? Do immigrants truly rob jobs from locals? What impact do immigrants have on wage rates and living standards in the host country? 


5 A Man of Good Hope
 


It’s based on numerous interviews Jonny Steinberg did with a Somali refugee boy and it portrays his story. It is later adapted into a musical.


When civil war came to Mogadishu, the capital of Somalia, in January 1991, two-thirds of the city's population fled. Among them was eight-year-old Asad Abdullahi. His mother murdered by a militia, his father somewhere in hiding, he was swept alone into the great wartime migration that scattered the Somali people throughout sub-Saharan Africa and the world.


This extraordinary book tells Asad's story. Tossed from one catastrophe to another, Asad's journey covers countries and continents, from the cosmopolitan streets of inner-city Nairobi to the Ethiopian hinterland; and the promises and pitfalls of Johannesburg, South Africa, whose streets he believed would be lined with gold. Thus begins a shocking adventure in a country richer and more violent than he could possibly have imagined, leading to the final coda of America. Throughout, A Man of Good Hope is a complex, affecting, ultimately hopeful portrait of Asad's search for salvation, suffused with dreams and desires and a need to leave something permanent on this earth.


6 Exceptional People: How Migration Shaped Our World and Will Define Our Future
 


“Exceptional People” takes the long view: the book starts with our shared migrating past when our common Homo sapiens ancestors first wandered out of Africa to populate the rest of the world. About a 125,000 ago the first Homo sapiens entered what is now the Middle East and slowly but steadily spread over the entire globe and its furthest corners – including Easter Island and other small islands in the Pacific Ocean which were only settled about 1500 years ago. Today, Homo sapiens are the most widely spread mammal in the world. With that introduction Goldin, Cameron and Balarajan seek to counter what has often been called the “sedentary bias” in migration studies (Bakewell, 2007), i.e. the assumption that being sedentary is the human norm and movement is the exception. Instead the authors go on to show over the next 250 pages that migration and migrants are a fundamental part of human life, history and civilization and that they have been for all of human history and that they will be for foreseeable future.


“Exceptional people” is divided into three parts: Past, Present and Future. “Past” is a concise overview of human migrations through the ages, from pre-history to the present including the age of “gunpowder empires”, the Trans-Atlantic slave trade and indentured labour migration from South Asia and other places during colonialism. It provides a short overview of the first “Age of Migration” (1820-1920) when millions of Europeans headed for the “New World” in the USA, Canada, Australia, Argentina and Brazil to escape poverty, famine and persecution. Historical estimates suggest that more than 60 million Europeans left during this period, and the scale of this movement was unprecedented in human history.  Currently, estimates suggest that there are 200 million migrants in the world; however, today’s migratory movements may outnumber the “Age of Migration” in absolute, but not in relative terms. The “Past” section concludes with the historical developments from 1914-1973, the impact of the two World Wars, the institutionalization of the international refugee regime as well as labor migration schemes to Western Europe that came to a sudden stop  when oil prices quadrupled overnight in 1973.


The second part, titled “Present” seeks to cover a mix of historical developments since 1973, the major political and economic discussions, in particular the asylum crisis as well as the current political obsession with “managed migration” and border controls. The section also covers the main theoretical perspectives on migration: macro, meso and micro level explanations for movement are explained and discussed in a very accessible way. 


The last part of the book entitled “Future” is undoubtedly the most controversial part. Unlike many academics, Goldin et al. are unafraid to engage in predictions and prescriptions for the future and they set out to argue that future immigration is necessary, desirable and inevitable. Based primarily on demographic forecasts for both the developing and developed world, the authors conclude that immigration is unlikely to subside in the 21st century. On the contrary, since sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia are likely to go through a “population hump” where a large number of people enter the labor force at the same time, creating migratory pressures and migration is likely to increase. Simultaneously, the developed world is experiencing declining fertility and an aging population, this will eventually result in a contraction of the labor force as well as an increase in the dependency ratio between those active in the labor market and those outside of it (children and the elderly). This will also create a need for labor in sectors that hard to automate or outsource such as elderly and social care. These developments combined are likely to make immigration and human mobility necessary and inevitable in the 21st century.




Related

4. │Why is migration both inevitable and desirable?

62.│How Can We Live Better Together?

66.│MigrationIs A Part of Development, Not A Problem

92.│Expulsions: the Brutal Logic of Global Economy

95.│7 Myths and Facts of Human Migration

102.│A Massive Loss of Habitat

160.│Cities Are Also for Ordinary Migrants

169.│Dollar Street shows how people live by photos

188.│Asylum Seekers Are Not a “Burden”

193.│Where has China’s Aid Gone?

204.│All You Need to Know About the Global Inequality

208.│Piketty on the Rising Inequality in China, 1978-2015

233.│Global Remittance:Who Is Getting and Sending the Most?

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