Migration Analysis




 Misha was not an immigrant who was forced to come to the United States.  In fact he chose to come to the United States because he felt the closest connection to that of Rostav.  It was his country and our country working together to bring him over.  They are trying to bring about globalization between their economies and the world.  As mentioned in The City: strategic site/new frontier by Saskia Sassen, people and cultures are “de- and re-territorialized” in the name of capitalism and globalization.  It is this reason that he had the opportunity that he might not have had several decades ago. 

Misha’s decision to come to the United States was also based on the lack of jobs in Rostav.  Although the level of education is greater in Rostav than it is in the United States, the highly educated are forced to take low paying jobs.  In the article Transnationalism: A New Analytic Framework for Understanding Migration by Schiller, Basch, and Blanc-Szanton, they expound on globalization to say that economic shifts have created a “displaced, underemployed labor force”.  It was partly this reason why Misha chose to leave Rostav. 

Although Misha thought the culture of the United States would be similar to that of his back home he found a few differences.  In Rostav they have more community activities than in the United States.  They have parties with bands and dancing after closing down streets.  In the book New Pioneers in the Heartland: Hmong Life in Wisconsin by Jo Ann Koltyk, she talks about how the Hmong way of life is not accepted by the people in the community of Wisconsin.  Every culture has different ways of life and different customs and we are not aware of them until we have an opportunity to submerse ourselves in their ways of doing things.  What might be disgusting or wrong to one group may not be that way to another. 

The language barrier was another problem Misha had to face when he came to the United States.  He had a strong grasp of the English language from what he had learned in school in Rostav, but there were slang words and usages of words that gave him some difficulty in the beginning.  In the article Passport Photos by Amitava Kumar, she talks about how language can play a vital role in keeping immigrants and citizens segregated.  With the meaning of words getting lost in translation the author believes that language “has been used as a racial weapon in immigration”.  She uses the telephone company Sprint’s billing letter as an example in the change of meaning from English to Spanish. 

Another difference that Misha pointed out between Rostav and the United States is the difference between governments.  In Rostav you are forced to join the military for at least two years which was another reason for Misha wanting to leave.  In the book In and Out of Morocco: Smuggling and Migration in a Frontier Boomtown by David A. McMurray, he mentions how the government and economy of Morocco have thrived off of smuggling even though it is illegal.  The governments of some growing nations are not as free and accepting as the United States and can therefore become corrupt and militaristic.  By Misha coming to the United States he believed that his opportunities at having a so called “better life” would come to pass.

Sam Haldiman


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