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November 23, 2009

What I'm Reading: The Yiddish Policemen's Union and Comparative Migrations

When I speak to Jewish audiences about the contemporary politics of immigration, I often lean on the historical parallels between contemporary migrations and Jewish experience of diaspora, in which Jews have so often been the strangers.

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November 16, 2009

What I'm Reading

Refugee's stories have been a large part of my reading since I decided to write down my parents' refugee journey. Of the dozens I've read there are two that I would particularly recommend: German Boy: A Child in War (by Wolfgang W. E. Samuel) and The Latehomecomer: A Hmong Family Memoir (by Kao Kalia Yang).

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September 9, 2009

What I'm Reading

For me, summer reading means escape, largely through fiction that is as unrelated as possible to my scholarly work. Imagine my surprise then when I opened two new novels pulled randomly from the shelves of the Minneapolis Public Library. Both featured main characters who were very much "on the move."

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January 19, 2007

Iraq, Refugees, and Responsibility

By Donna R. Gabaccia, Professor of History and Director, Immigration History Research Center

Here in Minnesota, where refugees form a larger part of the foreign-born population than they do anywhere else in the U.S., it’s easy to assume that the U.S. offers refuge and a peaceful landing to most of the displaced persons of the world. Many of the refugees currently in the upper Midwest—certainly the Hmong, Somalians, and Vietnamese—fled regions that had seen both significant political violence and the engagement of U.S. military forces. So are we likely to see a large flow of refugees from Iraq in the years ahead?

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October 2, 2006

Gimmicks and Games

By Andy Urban, PhD candidate in History at the University of Minnesota. IHRC Affiliated Faculty

As the November election approaches, immigration remains a key topic of debate. It can be a bit disconcerting how decisions and policy changes that will potentially affect millions of humans, seem to be implemented with an immediacy that belies months of inaction. There is nothing quite like the fear of losing office to get politicians to act; unfortunately, campaign politics do not always display the type of nuance that would best serve such important decisions.

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May 30, 2006

Migration, Asylum, Transnationalism ... and Baseball?

By Joel Wurl, Head of Research Collections and Associate Director of the Immigration History Research Centerat the University of Minnesota

The recently completed World Baseball Classic may seem an unlikely starting point for commentary on migration, but as this Miami Herald article illustrates, it actually furnishes an interesting window on a host of complex, inter-related issues.

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