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A Nation of Nations: A Great American Immigration Story

About the Book

A Nation of Nations: A Great American Immigration Story

The dramatic and compelling story of the transformation of America during the last 50 years, told through a handful of families in one suburban county in Virginia that has been utterly changed by recent immigration.

In the 50 years since the 1965 Immigration and Nationality Act, the foreign-born population of the United States has tripled. Significantly, these immigrants are not coming from Europe, as was the case before 1965, but from all corners of the globe. Today non-European immigration is 90 percent of the total immigration to the US. Americans today are vastly more diverse than ever. They look different, speak different languages, practice different religions, eat different foods, and enjoy different cultures.

In 1950, Fairfax County, Virginia, was 90 percent white, 10 percent African-American, with a little more than 100 families who were “other.” Currently the African-American percentage of the population is about the same, but the Anglo white population is less than 50 percent, and there are families of Asian, African, Middle Eastern and Latin American origin living all over the county. A NATION OF NATIONS follows the lives of a few immigrants to Fairfax County over recent decades as they gradually “Americanize.” Hailing from Korea, Bolivia and Libya, these families have stories that illustrate common immigrant themes: friction, between minorities, economic competition and entrepreneurship, and racial and cultural stereotyping.

It’s been half a century since the 1965 Immigration and Nationality Act changed the landscape of America, and no book has assessed the impact or importance of this law as this one does, with its brilliant combination of personal stories and larger demographic and political issues.

A Nation of Nations: A Great American Immigration Story
by Tom Gjelten

  • Publication Date: September 15, 2015
  • Genres: History, Nonfiction
  • Hardcover: 416 pages
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster
  • ISBN-10: 1476743851
  • ISBN-13: 9781476743851