Migration and Integration: African Americans and Mexican Americans in the U.S.

Topics: United States, Native Americans in the United States, New Mexico Pages: 5 (1232 words) Published: October 19, 2014


New in America Paper‏
SOC/262
September 2, 2014
Patrick Norman
New in America Paper‏

A number of African Americans and Mexican Americans gradually migrated into the United States with the development of agriculture in the country. Although the reasons for their migration were different, the African Americans and Mexican Americans share similar situations as they tried to integrate into American society. The choice to migrate into the US was mainly attributed to their need to look for better opportunities, new lives, admiration and obstacles.

Migration has a different meaning among African Americans, who had to go through a lot of suffering when they came into the country. They initially migrated into the United States as slaves and made to work in plantation and homes in the new world. They were also considered as commodities to be traded in the market. The working conditions of African Americans on the plantations were horrible even though they formed the foundation of the entire cotton industry. The conditions that African Americans had to go through when they migrated into the United States were detailed and explained in the book “In Motion: The African American Migration Experience.” The book gives a list of the first African Americans who arrived into the United States during the 1500s through the Caribbean and Mexico. This account is different from common knowledge, which indicates that they arrived through Jamestown in 1619. They settled in a number of southern states such as South Carolina, Florida, and Texas.

A good number of slaves found safe haven from their owners in the marshlands and the Bahamas. Some of them even started to live with Native Americans. They started to adjust and embrace the culture of the place where they established themselves. They learned the local languages and other dialects. The twentieth century saw a good number of African Americans increase their influence in history. They played a significant role the development of industrial areas, even as racism continued to remind African Americans of their suffering in the past. A movement was started that saw a number of laws being altered to integrate equality in society. The government was compelled to include African Americans due to the legal system that they were able to establish. The views and contributions of African Americans were included in the formation of cultural and social policies. The Harlem renaissance during the 1920s and the 1930s was the most significant input that resulted to the acknowledgement of African American culture and connected their culture with other cultures. The talents of African Americans in art, music, and literature started to emerge during the period. A number of authors were able to demonstrate their talents, which describe the experience of African Americans. It also resulted to the establishment of a number of African American political interest groups. These authors include Neela Larson, Zora Langston Hughes, and Zora Neale Hurston. Three of these political groups that emerged include the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, the Nation of Islam, and the Negro Improvement Association. The African American culture also started to spread from the south. The culture and arts of American society were influenced by African, Haitian, and Caribbean cultures. The situation further enriched the culture of the African American population despite the adversity they faced along the way. This demonstrated the experience of African Americans when they migrated into the United States.

At the start of the twentieth century, Mexican Americans were able to easily enter into the United States. An emergency quota act that was ratified by the United States allowed Mexican Americans to travel freely into the US. This act also limited the migration of citizens coming from countries in the Eastern hemisphere. Special allowances were even given to Mexicans by the US...
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