Immigration and Settlement of Asian Indians in Phoenix, Arizona 1965-2011: Ethnic Pride Vs. Racial Discrimination in the Suburbs

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A sociological examination of the immigration patterns of Asian Indians to the suburbs Phoenix, Arizona from 1965 to the present. It explores their housing patterns, as well as methods of overcoming racial, ethnic, and class barriers to their acceptance as American citizens, while also trying to hold onto their native born heritage. There is a lengthy discussion of the sociology of space, human geography, community formation, and native customs being transformed or even lost.


“One interesting and original contribution is the distinction between enduring and transitory spaces of claims-making and hence community construction. Another original contribution is the focus on the concept of ‘invisibility’. Skop argues that this reinforces social fragmentation…and often precludes pan-ethnic Indian-ness.”
- Prof. Caroline W. Brettell
Southern Methodist University

“Skop frames her argument around what she calls the ‘ethnogenetic presumption.’ She defines this new concept as an understanding that ‘ethnicity is an entity that, even if it is constructed, exists despite of the wills and desires of the individuals.’ This view incorporates the various theoretical approaches espoused by constructionists, culturalists, and structionalists alike.”
- Prof. Susan Hardwick
- University of Oregon

"On the whole, the book represents a critical and important consideration of the dynamics of migration, identity and space both generally and with respect to the Indian community in Phoenix." --Kulwindar Singh,
Hansard Society
National Identities Review
16:1, 95-97, DOI:10.1080/14608944.2013.816086

"... contributes to our current understanding of the Indian community, invisible and subtle landscapes, ethnic identity, emerging gateways, and transitory spaces. The extended time that Skop put into data collection and her attempts to familiarize herself with the culture make this research quite credible. The book is accessible to all those who have a genuine interest in the Indian American immigrant community and it would serve as a good text for the classroom. This book soldifies the notion of pan-cultural Indian landscape, white also exposing the complexity of India's many regional identities and how these are transmitted across the globe." --Prof. Christabel Devadoss and Prof. David H. Kaplan,
Kent State University
Journal of Regional Science
Vol.53,No. 4, 2013 pp.737-738

"This book has a wealth of information , as well as policy implications." --Prof. Jose Carlos Teixeira,
University of British Columbia, Okanagan
IMR International Migration Review
Vol. 47, No. 3, pp. 777-778(Fall 2013)

"... it is an intriquing book dealing with space and place-making strategies in the construction of identity, without belaboring the often repeated and 'stale' debates on migrant assimilation and culture pluralism, which are inadequate for the distinctive characteristics of contemporary migrants. ... This book contributes to the scholarship on migrant destinations and can play a leading role in developing a through understanding of how identity formation works for migrants depending in when they arrive and where they settle." --Prof. Manashi Ray,
West Vriginia State University
Asian and Pacific Migration Journal
Vo. 22, No.4, 2013 pp 573-576

Table of Contents

Foreword by Dr John W. Frazier
Chapter 1: Introduction
Theorizing Migrant Communities
The Socio-Spatial Behavior of Migrants
Ethnic Identity and the Racialization Process
The Socio-Spatial Dialectic
Chapter 2: Passage from India: Migration to the United States
Region, Language and Religion
Social Class
State-Level Patterns
Metropolitan Level Patterns
Intra-Metropolitan Level Patterns
Chapter 3: Creating Phoenix’s Saffron Suburbs
Residential Patterns of the Indian Community Patterning of Indian Community Spaces The Local Process of Settlement Indian Migration to Phoenix: 1965-Present Socioeconomic Characteristics Buying a Home Shifting Economic and Urban Structures Economic Configurations Urban Geographies National Immigration Policy The Global Context Conclusion Chapter 4: Permanent Spaces of Community Interaction
The Indo-American Cultural and Religious Center The Building of a Hindu Temple Indian Commercial Spaces A Note on Permanent Community Spaces Chapter 5: The Transitory Spaces of Community Interaction
School Auditoriums and Republic Day Events School Cafeterias and the Ganeshotsav Festival The Dollar Cinema and Bollywood The Public Park and Annual Picnics Transitory Space as Place-Making Strategy Chapter 6: Individual Identity Formation
Narratives of Traditions Maintained, Customs Lost
Shekhar and Chitra
Syed and Venu
Prasad and Amrita
Rama and Alka
A Continuum of Cohesiveness
Chapter 7: Conclusion
Implications of “Invisibility” at the Local Level
Socio-Spatial Fragmentation
Emerging Identities
Rethinking the Other
Implications of “Invisibility” at the National Scale
Appendix. Research Methodology
Field Work
Other Methods

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