New Americans

Overview

Spanning four continents and several years in the lives of seven immigrant families, The New Americans is at once the most globe-trotting and intimate introduction to the new American immigration. Emmy Award?winning journalist Rub?n Mart?nez?s ?powerful and perceptive chronicle? (Booklist) lyrically recounts the dramatic voyages and day-to-day experiences of a small group of families who were featured in the PBS documentary of the same name. They come from Mexico, Nigeria, Palestine, India, and the Dominican ...

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Overview

Spanning four continents and several years in the lives of seven immigrant families, The New Americans is at once the most globe-trotting and intimate introduction to the new American immigration. Emmy Award–winning journalist Rubén Martínez’s “powerful and perceptive chronicle” (Booklist) lyrically recounts the dramatic voyages and day-to-day experiences of a small group of families who were featured in the PBS documentary of the same name. They come from Mexico, Nigeria, Palestine, India, and the Dominican Republic, and wind up in Chicago, Montana, Silicon Valley, and the California badlands. Their stories—told with “enthralling” (Publishers Weekly) literary skill and illustrated with stunning portraits from award-winning photographer Joseph Rodriguez—paint a portrait of the new, multicultural America.

Martinez weaves his own family’s moving immigrant history into the book, and essays on the films of Indian American director Mira Nair, the contemporary corridos of Mexican border musicians Los Tigres del Norte, and other immigrant artists explore the ways the new immigrant culture is transforming the United States.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"Fresh, nuanced and insightful.. . . [A] thoughtful, readable contribution to the immigration debates." &#8212Houston Chronicle

"Seven new immigrant families . . . all have their stories told with an impeccable eye. . . . A positive anthology of human determination and the capacity for change and growth." &#8212Midwest Book Review

"Martínez has penned five powerful and perceptive immigrant portraits . . . skillfully tying them together with essays on the emerging immigrant pop culture." &#8212Booklist

"A map of exile in global times, designed from within." &#8212Eduardo Galeano, Author of Upside Down

"Martínez writes with moral clarity and razor-sharp wit." &#8212Mike Davis

"Recommended for school, public, and academic libraries." &#8212Library Journal

Library Journal
Although an increasing volume of research is being done to document an immigrant population of unprecedented size and diversity in the United States, the story of most of these newcomers remains untold. An accomplished author and journalist and himself the son of Mexican and Salvadoran immigrants, Martinez (creative writing, Univ. of Houston; Crossing Over: A Mexican Family on the Migrant Trail) does much to remedy our ignorance. This book, a companion to a PBS miniseries, details the lives of seven families who have recently arrived in the United States from the West Bank, Nigeria, the Dominican Republic, Mexico, and India. Some of them occupy the bottom rungs of society, while others are middle-class professionals, but all of them experience a sense of inner conflict between the Old World and the New. Martinez sympathetically tells the story of each while at the same time maintaining the objectivity of a journalist. Though he occasionally reflects upon his own experiences, Martinez generally succeeds in making the book about his subjects rather than himself. He does not offer much in the way of policy recommendations other than to advocate a more compassionate approach to the "problem" of immigration. Well illustrated with images by photojournalist Rodriguez, this book is recommended for school, public, and academic libraries.-David A. Timko, U.S. Census Bureau Lib., Washington, DC Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781565847927
  • Publisher: New Press, The
  • Publication date: 3/26/2004
  • Pages: 288
  • Product dimensions: 7.90 (w) x 6.40 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author


Journalist, poet, and performer Rubén Martínez is associate professor of creative writing at the University of Houston’s Creative Writing Program. He is the author of Crossing Over and The Other Side.
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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments
Prologue 1
1 Palestine to Chicago: Naima Saddeh and Hatem Abudayyeh 25
The Narrative of Exile: Mahmoud Darwish 57
2 Nigeria to Chicago: Israel and Ngozi Nwidor, and Barine Wiwa-Lawani 65
The Narrative of Exile: Ken Saro-Wiwa 99
3 Dominican Republic to Great Falls: Ricardo Rodriguez and Jose Guerra 111
The Narrative of Exile: Juan Luis Guerra 135
4 Mexico to Mecca: the Flores Family 145
The Narrative of Exile: Los Tigres del Norte and Manu Chao 173
5 India to Silicon Valley: Anjan Bacchu and Harshini Radhakrishnan 185
The Narrative of Exile: Mira Nair 213
Epilogue 227
Selected Bibliography 249
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