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America's new immigration: Characteristics, destinations, and impact, 1970–1989

The Social Science Journal
Publication Date
DOI: 10.1016/0362-3319(94)90020-5


Abstract Recent foreign immigration has become a major factor not only in contributing to America's population growth, but also in creating greater diversity among its people. Since the enactment of the 1965 Immigration and Nationality Act Amendments, most immigrants are coming from new sources in Asia and Latin America. This study analyzes the changes in the policies that have allowed these new immigrants, the immigrants' characteristics, and destinations within America. Current policies will lead to a significant decline in the country's percentage of Euroamericans and a corresponding increase in the population categorized as minorities, which are determined by race and Hispanic origins not numerical counts. With record numbers of Asian, particularly South and East Asians, and Latin American immigrants arriving annually, America's metropolitan areas are increasingly expected to accomodate them. Consequently, rapid racial and ethnic diversity is developing in these urban centers while most rural areas remain populated largely by Euroamericans. Public policymakers and urban planners involved in the governance and revitalization of inner cities and educators in their promotion of the awareness of cultural diversity need to recognize both the potential problems and attributes of these developments in America's large metropolitan areas.

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