AMS/MCS/SOC 200 Study Guide – Ch. 8: Asian Americans

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  1. How did the California Gold Rush influence immigration from China? What types of societal reactions did Chinese Americans face during the 19th century? What types of jobs did Chinese do?
    To seek there fortune, some came to stay but many came as sojourners, intending to return home after earning enough money. The Chinese encountered racial hostility almost as soon as they arrived in California. They were often expelled from the mining camps, forbidden to enter schools, denied the right to testify in court, barred from obtaining citizenship, and occasionally murdered. Many Chinese worked as farm laborers in rural areas or as unskilled workers in urban areas.
  2. What is the Chinese Exclusion act of 1882 and why is it significant in U.S. history?
    A bill that barred Chinese laborers for a 10-year period but permitted Chinese business, clergy, students and travelers to enter. It marked a significant change in national policy toward immigrants. For the first time in the nations history, the federal government enacted a human embargo on a particular race of laborers.
  3. Why did Chinatowns develop? What were the conditions of Chinatowns in the 1800s and 1900s? What are their conditions nowadays?
    Expelled from various trades and occupations as well as from many residential areas, Chinese immigrants had little choice but to congregate in Chinatowns and rely on their own benevolent and protective associations for assistance.They were in low rent ghetto areas, usually situated close to major means of transportation. They were dirty rat infested, overcrowded, and often diseased. A Chinatown concern in recent years has been the increasing rebelliousness, criminality, and radicalism of many Chines American Youth.
  4. How has Chinese immigration changed since the 1965 Immigration Act? What does it mean when the text says that Chinese Americans present a "bipolar occupational distribution"?
    Since the 1965 Immigration Act the Chinese population has increased rapidly, growing more than fivefold since 1970 to about 2.5 million in 2000. More than 342,000 arrived in the 1990s, a total all ready surpassed between 2000 and 2006 with 385,000. Chinese Americans present a bipolar occupational distribution: 30% occupy proffesional and technical positions as against 15% of the white labor force, but the Chinese are also heavily overrepresented among low-skilled service workers, with 24% as compared to 7% of the white labor force. Such employment characteristics reflect in part educational and immigration patterns. Chinese have a higher median family income than other U.S. ethnic groups.
  5. When did Japanese begin immigrating to the U.S.? What societal reactions did they face upon arrival? How did this impact the type of work they gravitated towards?
    Beginning in 1886, the Japanese began emigrating, first laborers and eventually as permanent settlers. Anti-Chinese sentiment was still strong, there racial visibility led to conflict with organized labor, vegetable growers, and shippers in California. Their industriousness and knowledge of cultivation placed the Japanese in serious competition with white and Hispanic farmers, and they encountered further acts of discrimination. Most became farmers or farm laborers, they entered various manufacturing and service occupations.
  6. What laws did California pass regarding landholding in 1913? How did this law change in 1920?
    In 1913 California legislature passed the first alien landholding law, prohibiting any person who was ineligible for citizenship from owning land in the state and permitting such persons to lease land for no more than three years in succession. Because their children born in this country were automatically U.S. citizens, the Japanese held land in their childrens name, either directly or through landholding companies whose stock they owned collectively. In 1920, the California legislature passed a law prohibiting aliens from being guardians of a minor's property or from leasing any land at all.
  7. What did the executive order issued by Theodore Roosevelt do? Also, what is the Gentlemen’s Agreement of 1908?
  8. What event led to the relocation of Japanese Americans to internment camps? When did this occur? What were the conditions of the internment camps? What were the consequences (financial, for example) for the Japanese that were interned? Did Japanese Americans get back everything they had lost?
  9. Why did Filipino immigrants face no quota restrictions until 1935? Could they become U.S. citizens at this time? Why or why not? When could Filipino residents become naturalized citizens?
    The Filipinos came to the U.S. with a unique status. In 1898, the Philippines became a U.S. possession, so for the next several decades, the inhabitants were considered U.S. nationals, although not U.S. citizens. Not therefore designated as aliens, they faced no quota restrictions on their entry until 1935. The geographic locale of their homeland and their Spanish heritage complicated their status, however, because the federal government argued that they were not whites. The U.S. Supreme court upheld this official position in a 1934 ruling on a case challenging the 1790 naturalization law limiting citizenship to foreign-born whites. In 1942 Legislation enabled Filipino residents to become naturalized U.S. citizens.
  10. What pull factors determined Filipino immigration from 1908 into the 1930s? What type of work did they enter in the U.S.? How did the Immigration Act of 1965 affect Filipino immigration (both the level of immigration and the type of immigrants)? What push factors influenced Filipino immigration after 1965?
    After the Gentlemen's Agreement Act of 1908 curtailed japanese emigration, the Hawaiian Sugar Planters Association recruited laborers from the Philippines to work for the plantations. California Growers, faced with the loss of Mexican labor because of the quota restrictions in the pending Immigration Act of 1924, turned to the Filipinos as an alternative labor source. Since the Immigration Act of 1965, Filipino immigration has been quite high. An unstable political situation at home toward the end of the Marcos regime and continuing economic deprivation in the Philippines have served as major push factors. New Filipino arrivals tend to have better educational and occupational skills than most of their cohorts born in the U.S.
  11. What does the "Yellow Peril" refer to? What examples did we discuss in lecture (and are also discussed in your text)? How did sexuality play a role in constructions of the "yellow peril"?
  12. How did the Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882 affect Korean immigration? What were push factors for Koreans at that time?
    The Hawaii Sugar Planters Association, needing laborers to replace the Chinese, who were excluded by the 1882 legislation, recruited 7,226 Koreans between 1903 and 1905. The Koreans, mostly peasants, sought economic relief from the famines plaguing their country at the turn of the century.
  13. What roles do ethnic churches play for the Korean community? How do self-employment rates among Korean Americans compare to all ethnic/racial groups, including whites? What is the kye and how does it contribute to self-employment for Korean Americans?
    The churches play an important contributions they become a social organization, providing religious and ethnic fellowship, a personal community, and a family atmoshere within an alien and urban enviroment. Koreans have one of the highest self-employment rates of all ethnic or racial groups, including whites. 1 in 8 Korean Americans is a business owner, for blacks it is 1 in 67 and for non-Hispanic whites 1 in 15. The Kye provides start up funds for their ethnic entrepreneurs.
  14. When was the first phase of Asian Indian immigration and of what social class were most immigrants? When was the second phase of Asian Indian immigration and of what social class were most immigrants? What societal reactions did they face in the U.S.? What was the 1923 U.S. Supreme Court decision about citizenship for Asian Indians?
  15. What push factors influenced Asian Indian immigration? What is the brain drain?
  16. Under what status did most Vietnamese arrive in the U.S. immediately after 1975? Why were they migrating to the U.S. at that time? Of what social class were most? How do Vietnamese Americans compare socioeconomically to other Asian American groups?
    As the Vietnam war ended they waited in relocation centers and military bases for sponsors to materialize. They were migrating for political reasons rather than economic reasons. Many of the Vietnamese were middle class, well educated, with marketable skills, and nearly half spoke english. Vietnamese-like other southeast asians-have lower labor force participation and median family incomes, higher poverty and unemployment rates, and disproportionate representation in low-skill, low paying jobs than most East asian American Groups.
  17. What is the stereotype of the "Model Minority"? Why is it said to be a myth? What are critiques of this myth of the model minority (in terms of how it affects the status quo)? [This last question is discussed in good detail in lecture as well]
    The "Model Minority" - William Peterson 1966 Praised Asian Americans as a "model minority" Images of the Chinese engineers, Japanese financiers, Filipino nurses, Korean entrepreneurs, and Vietnamese restaurateurs abound, helping reinforce this positive stereotype. Asian American educational and economic successes apparently demonstrate that people of color can realize the American Dream through hard work and self-reliance. Like all stereotypes, however, that of the model minority is misleading and ignores the diversity of the Asian American population. Many Asian Americans, in fact, are poor and poorly educated, people who need help in attaining economic and educational success. Not all Asian American students are strong academically. The Idea of "Model Minority" also creates a harmful and unrealistic example for the dominant group to use as a cudgel to blame others for their difficulties in achieving success. Criticize other minority groups for failing to attain comparable levels of achievement.
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AMS/MCS/SOC 200 Study Guide – Ch. 8: Asian Americans
AMS/MCS/SOC 200 Study Guide – Ch. 8: Asian Americans
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