Tracking a Changing America Across the Generations after Immigration (Tomás R. Jiménez)


1. The post-1960s immigration boom and contemporary demographics have elevated generation-since-immigration as a category that is central to analysts and, more generally, to Americans as they make sense of their place in the world around them. This makes the collection of data on immigrant generations imperative if surveys are to keep up with how the nation's people think about themselves and each other. A clear portrait of contemporary assimilation, and indeed American progress, depends on possessing the right tools to paint such a portrait. That means that surveys must enable researchers to identify respondents' generation, particularly the third generation of the post-1965 immigration wave.

2. Keywords: immigration; assimilation; generation; identity; data


3. The large post-1965 wave of immigration highlights the continued relevance of generation for tracking assimilation. Intergenerational comparisons are central to research on post-1965 immigration, and especially diverging assessments of second-generation assimilation. There is disagreement about whether the assimilation of the Latino and BLACK post-1965 second generation is characterized by racialization and permanent exclusion, or by steady, if bumpy, progress.

4. The sample also includes third-plus-generation comparison groups (whites, Puerto Ricans, and AFRICAN AMERICANS).