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The road to citizenship : what naturalization means for immigrants and the United States

Author: Sofya Aptekar
Publisher: New Brunswick, New Jersey : Rutgers University Press, [2015]
Edition/Format:   Print book : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
Between 2000 and 2011, eight million immigrants became American citizens. In naturalization ceremonies large and small these new Americans pledged an oath of allegiance to the United States, gaining the right to vote, serve on juries, and hold political office; access to certain jobs; and the legal rights of full citizens. In The Road to Citizenship, Sofya Aptekar analyzes what the process of becoming a citizen  Read more...
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Document Type: Book
All Authors / Contributors: Sofya Aptekar
ISBN: 9780813569543 0813569540 9780813569536 0813569532
OCLC Number: 893709482
Description: xiv, 172 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm
Contents: The roads to citizenship --
Citizenship and inequality --
Voices of the immigrants --
Citizenship ceremonies --
Welcoming and defining --
Naturalization in theory and practice.
Responsibility: Sofya Aptekar.

Abstract:

Between 2000 and 2011, eight million immigrants became American citizens. In naturalization ceremonies large and small these new Americans pledged an oath of allegiance to the United States, gaining the right to vote, serve on juries, and hold political office; access to certain jobs; and the legal rights of full citizens. In The Road to Citizenship, Sofya Aptekar analyzes what the process of becoming a citizen means for these newly minted Americans and what it means for the United States as a whole. Examining the evolution of the discursive role of immigrants in American society from potential traitors to morally superior "super-citizens," Aptekar's in-depth research uncovers considerable contradiction in the way naturalization works today. She contends that debates about immigration must be broadened beyond the current focus on borders and documentation to include larger questions about the definition of citizenship. Aptekar's work brings into sharp relief key questions about the overall system: does the current naturalization process accurately reflect our priorities as a nation and the values we wish to instill in new residents and citizens? What are the implications of keeping the process the same or changing it? Using archival research, interviews, analysis of census and survey data, and participant observation of citizenship ceremonies, The Road to Citizenship demonstrates the ways in which naturalization itself reflects the larger operations of social cohesion and democracy in America. -- from back cover.

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"Citizenship matters. But as Aptekar reveals in this superb book, its egalitarian promise is in question. Drawing on government statistics, immigrants' own words and highly original analyses of Read more...

 
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