These are some of the questions that were asked and somewhat answered in the research journal article “ Culture, Race, and the Economic Assimilation of Immigrants” by Jeffrey G. Reitz and Sherrilyn M. Sklar. Their article takes an in-depth look at the benefits and consequences of migrant assimilation into countries in Europe, Australia, and the U.S.A., paying particular attention to the discriminatory and economic aspects of their integration into a multicultural society. Their study tends to take the Functionalist approach as the writers viewed the advent of immigrants into the aforementioned cultures as an evolution in the life of an organism. By considering society as a living and evolving organism, the writers have successfully gotten past any racial misgivings that they may have had in order to see the bigger picture. That these small migrant groups actually help the social organism to thrive and remain relevant in this modern world by giving it new avenues by which the original culture can grow and assimilate into the newcomers lives. In their point of view, life has become a fusion of various cultures which in turn, makes life better for everyone concerned, be he an immigrant or not. Their investigation also begs to ask the question “ How much of their ethnic attachments must migrants surrender in order to be accepted into the new society they are living in?” A very valid question to ask as their research took them into the world of prejudice and what it means to the immigrants of the 3 countries. In their research, they were able to successfully prove that the existence of these ethnic groups help spur the economy of the country by opening up new avenues of business that cater to that specific racial group. A move which helps foster and promote multiculturalism and understanding between the majority and minority groups in the area. The long held belief is that racial prejudice is one reason why the so-called minority groups cannot flourish and are branded for life to live and act a certain way. That may have been true during the early years of migration due to the lack of understanding and underlying distrust of one another in relation to attachments created by the migrants with the original settlers. But in the 21st century era of globalization, pluralism is the basis why which most nations and immigrants conduct their lives amongst each other. Over time, we have come to recognize the importance of accepting and respecting the various cultures exclusive to the various races that we interact with daily. This has helped limit, not eradicate the cares of racial discrimination and prejudice in the workplace and society in general. In fact, the studies of Reitz and Sklar have conclusively proven that what exists in society today is pluralism instead of prejudice and discrimination. Mostly due to the economic benefits of such a social set up. Their study also shows us that the assimilation that occurs in society is not limited to the minority joining the majority race in terms of culture and tradition. Rather, these two highly different cultures have an interchange of culture and traditions, thus integrating the majority race into the lifestyle and traditions of the minority race. In the 21st century, assimilation no longer means the death of one's culture and tradition, but rather, the creation of a hybrid culture that takes the best of cultures in order to create a totally new and socially
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Culture, Race, and the Economic Assimilation of Immigrants As the world faces increasing globalization due to the demands of immigrants from various nations, one cannot help but wonder as to what the benefits of migrant assimilation may be on their adopted countries…
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