All the Nations Under Heaven: An Ethnic and Racial History of New York City / Edition 1

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Overview

In certain neighborhoods of New York City, an immigrant may live out his or her entire life without even becoming fluent in English. From the Russians of Brooklyn's Brighton Beach to the Dominicans of Manhattan's Washington Heights, New York is arguably the most ethnically diverse city in the world. Yet no wide-ranging ethnic history of the city has ever been attempted.

In All the Nations Under Heaven, Frederick Binder and David Reimers trace the shifting tides of New York's ethnic past, from its beginnings as a Dutch trading outpost to the present age where Third World immigration has given the population a truly global character. All the Nations Under Heaven explores the processes of cultural adaptation to life in New York, giving a lively account of immigrants new and old, and of the streets and neighborhoods they claimed and transformed.

All the Nations Under Heaven provides a comprehensive look at the unique cultural identities that have wrought changes on the city over nearly four centuries since Europeans first landed on the Atlantic shore. While detailing the various efforts to retain a cultural heritage, the book also looks at how ethnic and racial groups have interacted -- and clashed -- over the years.

From the influx of Irish and Germans in the nineteenth century to the recent arrival of Caribbean and Asian ethnic groups in large numbers, All the Nations Under Heaven explores the social, cultural, political, and economic lives of immigrants as they sought to form their own communities and struggled to define their identities within the grwonig heterogeneity of New York. In this timely, provocative book, Binder and Reimers offer insight into the cultural mosaic of New York at the turn of the millennium, where despite a civic pride that emphasizes the goals of diversity and tolerance, racial and ethnic conflict continue to shatter visions of peaceful coexistence.

Columbia University Press

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Editorial Reviews

Choice

Despite the fact that New York (nee New Amsterdam) has long been on of the most racially and culturally heterogeneous cities in the world, few have tried to encompass this reality in a single study. For this reason and for many others relating to the narrative itself, this work is unique. It is a comprehensive, informative, and analytic survey--and a good read, too.

The Village Voice

For New York City's legacy as the symbol of America's immigrant heritage to last, New Yorkers have to learn about themselves, in order to help themselves integrate harmoniously. The authors are right to say: "Those who truly love this great city believe that its future should and can be no less than its past."

Newsday

Frederick Binder and David Reimers' wonderful new ethnic history of New York City... [is] an excellent work of synthesis, helping us to see familiar history in a new and instructive way, as well as a joy to read. The authors are particularly persuasive in making the case that New York's multiethnic present is essentially continuous with its past...As our country seeks new way to balance diveristy and equality, one wonders if this history might not provide some practical lessongs for the nation as a whole."

Choice

Despite the fact that New York (nee New Amsterdam) has long been on of the most racially and culturally heterogeneous cities in the world, few have tried to encompass this reality in a single study. For this reason and for many others relating to the narrative itself, this work is unique. It is a comprehensive, informative, and analytic survey--and a good read, too.

Jewish Book World
The authors focus on the experiences of the various ethnic groups arriving in New York from colonial times to the present. The chapter devoted to Jews centers on the years between 1880 and World War I, but much information is included in other chapters as well.
Philip Kasinitz
An excellent work of synthesis, helping us to see familiar history in a new and instructive way, as well as a joy to read. The authors are particularly persuasive in making the case that New York's multiethnic present is essentially continuous with its past. In most of the ways that count, they argue, today's immigrants resemble their 19th-century predecessors.
Newsday
Village Voice
For New York City's legacy as the symbol of America's immigrant heritage to last, New Yorkers have to learn about the immigrants, about themselves, in order to help themselves integrate harmoniously. The authors are right to say: 'Those who truly love this great city believe that its future should and can be no less than its past.
Booknews
Highlights the shifting cultural identities in New York City from its beginning as a Dutch trading post through the influx of Germans and Irish in the 19th century and of Jews and Italians not long after, to the current populations of Caribbeans and Asians. Explores the processes of cultural adaptation and both the cooperation and clashes of racial and ethnic groups, and provides portraits of old and new immigrants and their streets and neighborhoods. Not illustrated. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780231078795
  • Publisher: Columbia University Press
  • Publication date: 9/26/1996
  • Series: Columbia History of Urban Life Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 353
  • Sales rank: 822,617
  • Product dimensions: 5.99 (w) x 8.98 (h) x 0.75 (d)

Meet the Author

Frederick M. Binder is Professor of History at the College of Staten Island of the City University of New York. He is coeditor with David Reimers of "The Way We Lived: Essays and Documents in American Social History," and author of "The Age of the Common School, 1830-1865" and "The Color Problem in Early National America as Views by John Adams, Jefferson, and Jackson."

David M. Reimers is Professor of History at New York University. His books include "Still the Golden Door: The Third World Comes to America" (Columbia) and, with Leonard Dinnerstein and Roger Nichols, "Natives and Strangers: Immigrants, Blacks, and Indians."

Columbia University Press

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Table of Contents

Preface ix1. Multiethnic from the Beginning: New York City,the Colonial and Revolutionary Years 12. Dynamic Growth and Diversity: The City and its People,1789-1880 333. Diversity in Action: Irish and German Immigrants in aGrowing City, 1789-1880 594. Old and New Immigrants in Greater New York City,1880 to World War I 935. Jews and Italians in Greater New York City,1880 to World War I 114 6. Ethnic New Yorkers from the Great War to the GreatDepression 1497. A Time of Trial: New Yorkers During the Great Depression and World War II 1768. A Better Time: New York City, 1945-1970 1979. Truly a Global City: New York, 1970 to the Present 225Afterword 259Notes 263Selected Reading 315Index 319

Columbia University Press

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