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  #61  
Old Posted Apr 26, 2017, 10:10 PM
Emprise du Lion Emprise du Lion is offline
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Originally Posted by Docere View Post
How should the size of diasporas be determined? Should there be a limit on how many generations removed from the immigrant experience, single vs. multiple ancestry etc., whether there's a political issue uniting multiple generations of the community etc.
I would assume that it would be hard for a one size fits all sort of thing. The Armenian diaspora in the United States, for example, is made up of people who arrived in the US in 19th century all the up to people who arrived yesterday. The majority of Armenians in the US likely aren't descended from an Armenian who actually came from what is considered to be the current country of Armenia as well.

Still, the group has held itself together thanks to the Armenian Apostolic Church and common political issues (Genocide recognition, Nagorno-Karabakh, refugees in the Middle East, etc). The Armenian language itself also does a pretty good job holding the community together, but there are still plenty of middle aged Armenians and younger in the US who don't speak it who still very much proclaim themselves as being Armenian.

Things get even more complicated when you look outside of the US.
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  #62  
Old Posted Apr 26, 2017, 11:59 PM
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Originally Posted by James Bond Agent 007 View Post
Not sure to be honest, though undoubtedly it's mostly a historic German neighborhood. That said, there aren't many European ethnic neighborhoods in the US anymore that still have lots of the original ethnic group still living there. Even most Little Italys have largely been reduced to a collection of Italian restaurants. So even if German Village is mostly historic that wouldn't make it any different from most formerly European ethnic neighborhoods.
True, but the point isn't that they're made up of immigrants. A neighborhood can continue into the 3rd and 4th generations, like South Philadelphia, where Italian ancestry is concentrated and a distinctly Italian American culture continues to exist. Or South Boston, filled with 5th generation Irish Americans!

What's the German American Southie or South Philly?

As for Little Italys, most of the original ones have withered away. Even Manhattan's Little Italy hasn't been an Italian American neighborhood for 50 years! But Italian neighborhoods continue in the outer boroughs - southern Brooklyn, East Bronx, Howard Beach etc., sustained by the post-WWII immigration wave.
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  #63  
Old Posted Apr 27, 2017, 12:00 AM
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James Bond is right to point out that there aren't as many European ethnic neighborhoods as there used to be. Which raises an interesting question though. What are some European enclaves in the US that emerged or expanded after say, 1950?
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  #64  
Old Posted Apr 27, 2017, 12:39 AM
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What are some European enclaves in the US that emerged or expanded after say, 1950?
I know there is a Bosnian neighborhood in St Louis somewhere that has emerged in the past 20-30 years. Also there are some Russian neighborhoods in LA and SF, but I'm not sure if those are recent or not.

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What's the German American Southie or South Philly?
If you go to the City Data.com maps there's a pull-down where you can map all kinds of things, and zoom in. For example, there are several Census tracts in Bismark, ND that report over 50% German ancestry. There are some rural areas NW of Milwaukee that are over 60% German. The Ridgewood neighborhood in Queens, until recently, used to be heavily German. But I think things like this and this are most of what's left of it.

To some extent the German-ness of the Midwest, at least, was/is a rural phenomenon. I think in the cities they tended to blend in with other ethnic groups.

I'm actually doing a project on this particular subject but it's in its early stages.
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  #65  
Old Posted Apr 27, 2017, 12:47 AM
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Originally Posted by Docere View Post
James Bond is right to point out that there aren't as many European ethnic neighborhoods as there used to be. Which raises an interesting question though. What are some European enclaves in the US that emerged or expanded after say, 1950?
I think the period after 1950 would be a very distinct list from more recent years. Also, do they have to be first generation neighborhoods?

Pretty much all the Sicilian/Calabrian enclaves date from post 1950, so there would be a ton of first generation Italian entries. Bensonhurst, Brooklyn or Morris Park, Bronx would be obvious examples. Parts of South Philly, Staten Island, Queens, North Jersey. Large geographies in South Brooklyn and East Bronx.

In recent decades, I'm guessing all the first generation European neighborhoods are Russian or Eastern European. Obviously all the Russian/Ukranian neighborhoods in South Brooklyn would be examples, and there would be smaller concentrations in many other metros. Bosnians in St. Louis, Poles in Chicago, etc. Poles came in large numbers in the 70's and 80's, so enclaves like Greenpoint, Brooklyn were growing for a while.

Do Bukharan Jews count? They're culturally more European, but from Uzbekistan, so probably no. They didn't start arriving until the 1990's, when they took over much of Central Queens.
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  #66  
Old Posted Apr 27, 2017, 12:52 AM
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Originally Posted by James Bond Agent 007 View Post
Ridgewood neighborhood in Queens, until recently, used to be heavily German.
Ridgewood has a fair number of German restaurants/businesses, but I doubt it has that many Germans anymore. Ridgewood is really the biggest Polish enclave in NYC these days, taking over from Greenpoint.

The remaining NYC German population is probably most concentrated in Glendale and Middle Village, which are adjacent to Ridgewood and less urban. Mrytle Ave. has scattered German businesses for maybe a mile corridor.

I doubt there's any real urban concentration of Germans anywhere in the U.S. (or Canada, for that matter). Northern Europeans assimilate fast.
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  #67  
Old Posted Apr 27, 2017, 12:52 AM
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In NYC, Astoria, Queens for Greeks. I think it emerged around 1965 and probably maxed out around 1980. Although there was Greek immigration to the US in the early 20th century I suspect that in NYC at least the majority of Greek Americans are first and second generation. I don't know if any Greek concentrations existed before prior to Astoria emerging.
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  #68  
Old Posted Apr 27, 2017, 12:57 AM
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Originally Posted by James Bond Agent 007 View Post
To some extent the German-ness of the Midwest, at least, was/is a rural phenomenon. I think in the cities they tended to blend in with other ethnic groups.
It didn't start out that way. Lots of cities in the midwest had very large, significant, and distinct urban German American communities (cincy, st. Louis, milwaukee, and chicago come immediately to mind), but the two world wars had a devastating effect on German American communities remaining distinct and insular. My own great grandfather told me stories how life in his old German neighborhood on the northside of chicago radically changed during and after WWI. He said that there was a concerted and conscious effort among his family, friends, and neighbors to downplay and diminish their "germanness" in an effort to blend into mainstream American society and to not appear to be sympathizers with the enemy.
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  #69  
Old Posted Apr 27, 2017, 1:06 AM
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I'm actually doing a project on this particular subject but it's in its early stages.
One thing I can say on this topic so far is, in Cleveland in 1880 there were A LOT of German immigrants living in the area around what is now Progressive Field. Here is a screenshot of one of the pages of one of my spreadsheets. Among other things I will be mapping where all these immigrants lived in 5 (maybe 6) Midwest cities using the 1880 Census. I suspect some of these German immigrant neighborhoods have been forgotten about and it would be cool to re-create them.

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  #70  
Old Posted Apr 27, 2017, 1:09 AM
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It didn't start out that way. Lots of cities in the midwest had very large, significant, and distinct urban German American communities (cincy, st. Louis, milwaukee, and chicago come immediately to mind), but the two world wars had a devastating effect on German American communities remaining distinct and insular. My own great grandfather told me stories how life in his old German neighborhood on the northside of chicago radically changed during and after WWI. He said that there was a concerted and conscious effort among his family, friends, and neighbors to downplay and diminish their "germanness" in an effort to blend into mainstream American society and to not appear to be sympathizers with the enemy.
I mean, yeah you're right (see post above), but in terms of concentration, the Germans who, back then, lived in the cities now have their great-great grandkids living mostly in the suburbs, and they're really mixed in with other groups, so the only thing resembling something "heavily German" for the past 50+ years is in the rural areas.
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  #71  
Old Posted Apr 27, 2017, 1:33 AM
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I was just responding to your assertion that german-ness in the midwelt "was/is" a rural phenomenon .

I'd largely agree with the "is" part, but would vehemently disagree with the "was" part.
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  #72  
Old Posted Apr 27, 2017, 1:44 AM
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For my project, one other thing I've done is map, by county, the % of German-born in the Midwest states, for 1870, 1880, 1890 and 1900. In 1870, for example, there were some pretty rural sizable areas that had very high German immigrants (higher than most of the urban counties). Particularly, much of Wisconsin, a good-sized swath of counties to the west of the Twin Cities, northeast Nebraska, the area between St Louis and Jefferson City, rural areas to the east of St Louis, and some others.

That said, many of these counties had small populations, so if you take that into account it makes them look smaller, even though the percentages were high. It depends on how you look at it.
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  #73  
Old Posted Apr 27, 2017, 1:49 AM
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Here it is.



The most heavily-German counties were the rural ones. But they had smaller populations so it may not have "seemed" very German even though it was.

I read recently that in parts of south-central ND there were a lot of native German speakers and even had classes taught in German as recently as the 50's.
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  #74  
Old Posted Apr 27, 2017, 1:57 AM
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Originally Posted by James Bond Agent 007 View Post
I read recently that in parts of south-central ND there were a lot of native German speakers and even had classes taught in German as recently as the 50's.
Ever heard of the Lawrence Welk Show? That was a huge show for old-timers in the 60's and 70's, and the host, Lawrence Welk, was a German-American from the Dakotas.

His English was pretty terrible and heavily accented - he spoke worse than many native-born Germans speak English. So I assume the town he grew up in was pretty much German-language first.

Also ironic in that anti-immigrant types always claim the European groups assassinated fast. Just Youtube him - Welk's English is awful, even after many decades in Hollywood. If he were brown and had a show in 2017, the nativists would scream about deporting him.
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  #75  
Old Posted Apr 27, 2017, 2:07 AM
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Yeah, a little bit. My mother has more of an accent than he does, however, and that's not very much.

Video Link


Growing up, occasionally a friend here and there would tell me they had a hard time understanding some of what my mother said, but it never sounded like much of an accent to me. Just a few things here and there.
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  #76  
Old Posted Apr 27, 2017, 3:28 AM
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Re: Germans vs. other European groups Chicago is a good example. German ancestry is common but "generic" and there's no German neighborhoods or concentrations anymore AFAIK. It's more known for its very large Polish presence and enclaves, which had significant immigration in the 80s and 90s. I think they moved into the old Polish neighborhoods on the NW side and spread to adjacent suburbs.

There's also a good sized Italian presence on the NW side and in suburbs of Elmwood Park, including a good number of postwar immigrants.

I know Greektown and the "old" Little Italy were destroyed by urban renewal, not sure if there's any Greek area of Chicago. My Big Fat Greek Wedding was shot in Toronto.
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  #77  
Old Posted Apr 27, 2017, 8:51 PM
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Originally Posted by Docere View Post
Here's an interesting NYT piece from 1983 on Irish American politics in New York.



http://www.nytimes.com/1983/03/04/ny...pagewanted=all

It notes the presence of 20th century Irish immigrant neighborhoods such as Woodlawn and Yonkers with more hard-line views than those of more long established, assimilated Irish Americans.

The fifth generation "militant Irish American" thing is probably more of a Boston phenomenon, while in New York it's more a product of 20th century immigration.




^ just an aside, but one of the the funniest phenomenons in ny is the fake irish bar run by real just off the boat irish.
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  #78  
Old Posted Apr 28, 2017, 4:46 PM
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Lawrence Welk's parents were Germans from Russia. According to this article:

"The German-Russian immigrant valued education but only for smaller children...German-Russian communities were slow to accept the idea of high schools and post-secondary education. Two townships in Pierce County offer information on the establishment of high schools. Balta, a German-Russian township, offered the first year of high school in 1926, but it was ten years before four years of high school were available."

https://library.ndsu.edu/grhc/resear...imilation.html
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  #79  
Old Posted Apr 28, 2017, 8:36 PM
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I think the period after 1950 would be a very distinct list from more recent years. Also, do they have to be first generation neighborhoods?
I was thinking more immigrant neighborhoods, otherwise a lot of "ethnic suburbs" would be on the list like the Italian areas of Long Island since most of the population moved there (or is descended from people who moved there) in the 1950s and 1960s.
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  #80  
Old Posted Apr 29, 2017, 4:11 PM
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My Big Fat Greek Wedding was shot in Toronto.
True. It was shot in Toronto, set in Chicago, and based on growing up Greek in Winnipeg. It was set in the US to make it more palatable to US audiences.
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