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The Question of Assimilation The Alice Paul Liberty Fellowship Moorestown NJ 10-2-09 What is Anthropology? Physical Anthropology Cultural • Primatology Anthropology The study of primates. A.K.A. Ethnology • Paleoanthropology • Ethnography The study of human A.K.A. evolution Participant Observation • Human Variation Studies: The study of • Linguistics the physical differences • Archaeology in humans. What is Culture? The Culture Concept: Culture is understood as the learned body of knowledge, beliefs, and customs that people use to organize their natural and social environments. Material Traits Non-Material Traits • Tools • Attitudes • Clothing • Behaviors • Housing • Beliefs • ETC. • ETC. RACE The Fossil Record The Essential Question Who Are We? Two Theories Homo Habilis 2.2 - 1.6 Australopithecus 4-2 MYA Homo Sapiens Sapiens 200,000 YA to Present Homo Erectus 2 - 0.4 MYA http://www.understandingrace.org/history/index.htm Map of early human migrations according to mitochondrial population genetics (numbers are millennia before present). What is Ethnicity? • A group of humans who identify with one another • Share a common HERITAGE that is real or presumed • Other groups recognize them as distinct • Share common cultural traits: behavioral, values, attitudes, etc. Do they represent a racial group… …ethnic group? American immigration history can be viewed in four epochs: • The colonial period (Northern Europe) • The mid-nineteenth century (Northern Europe) • The turn of the twentieth (Southern/Eastern Europe) • Post-1965 (Latin America/Asia) From 1836 to 1914, over 30 million Europeans migrated to the United States American Indians The First Immigrants to the Americas Attempts to Assimilate into American Culture From 1809-21 Sequoyah single-handedly creates a Cherokee syllabic alphabet so that his people's language can be written. Alphabet, Newspapers, Towns Planters and Farmers Some Owned Slaves Ross, one of the richest men in North Georgia before 1838 had a number of ventures including a 200 acre farm and owned a number of slaves. He was forced to move in the Trail of Tears. He lost everything. John Ross The American View of Native Americans Grant’s Inaugural Address 12-4-1871 "the policy pursued toward the Indians has resulted favorably...many tribes of Indians have been induced to settle upon reservations, to cultivate the soil, to perform productive labor of various kinds, and to partially accept civilization. They are being cared for in such a way, it is hoped, as to induce those still pursuing their old habits of life to embrace the only opportunity which is left them to avoid extermination.” The Dawes Act and Assimilation Indian children, seen as the key to assimilation, were forcibly taken from their homes and sent to school. In 1887, the government instituted the Dawes Act to accelerate assimilation by dissolving the reservations and allotting land to individual Indians. Most tribes resisted, refusing to give up their culture and unique ways of life. "...the real aim of [the Dawes Act] is to get at the Indians land and open it up for resettlement." - Senator Henry M. Teller, 1881 "A great general has said that the only good Congressman Henry Dawes Indian is a dead one. In a sense, I agree with once expressed his faith the sentiment, but only in the civilizing power of in this: that all the Indian there is in the private property with the race should be dead. claim that to be civilized Kill the Indian in him and save the man" was to "wear civilized clothes... cultivate the ground, live in houses, ride in Studebaker wagons, send children to school, drink whiskey [and] own property." Studebaker Wagon Carlisle School 1900 Making Apples: Red outside - White inside Native children at the Carlisle Indian school in Carlisle, Pennsylvania. This school forced native children removed from their home to be acculturated to white culture. Many of the children died because of bad food and conditions. In the 1800s and early 1900s Indians were forbidden to practice their religion or speak their language Carlisle Indian Industrial School American Horse (Oglala) American Horse with children and relatives during an 1882 visit to the Carlisle Indian School Apache children arrive at the Carlisle Indian School Apache children four months later What does it mean to be acculturated? Why were Indians subjected to a forced process of assimilation? What is the difference between the Indian experience and the newly arrived immigrants? Is there a standard set of cultural values that should be held by all people? Immigrant Enclave What are the differences in the attitudes and experience of these immigrants and immigrants today? Cultural Brokers Who are other cultural brokers today? Intolerance: The Closed Society Model Denmark Islamophobia The Closed Society Ethnic/Race/Class Exploitation The aim of a closed society is to ensure the supremacy of one class (or race or group) over another To bridge the gap, an elaborate set of explanations and ideas are needed which is, by definition, at variance with the facts SEGREGATION, APARTHIED, ROYALTY, ETC. 26 European Social Conditions • Alienated young Muslims, who became radicalized in Europe • Lack of alternative expression of social protest • No U-utopian vision for Justice & Fairness • Demise of old Left in Europe • Failure of European integration policy for Muslim populations - Rapid immigration growth post WWII - Vulnerable to economic crises • Rigid social structure in Europe - Lack of bottom up integration - Failure of top down policy Europe v. countries built on immigration - No “European Dream” but an alienation & radicalization of the younger generation Is this the future of US intercultural relations? 27 Assimilation: The Role of Language Class, Codes and Control, Basil Bernstein (1971) How do you get ACCESS in a CLOSED SOCIETY? In Group Out Group The Elaborated Language Code The Restricted Language Code What impact do they have on life’s chances and the process of assimilation?
"The Question of Assimilation"