Reading Response

The Uprooted to Transplanted

Rethinking immigration as a village means seeing the village as the country of origin and those who leave it as starting a new life with difficulties. The peasant class in Europe were the leading emigrants from Europe. Emigrant, not immigrants because to emigrate is to still take with you the traditions and customs of your old home to the new one and influence that place. The village is a fixed point and how the peasants identity themselves. It is from this village that the peasants learn of relationships and ties to each other. The rules and obligations of the village may include not being alone because to be alone is to not function within the village. Within the village it is usually better for things to stay the same than change because change means a departure from traditions. Traditions are what uphold the village way and are in place for the peasants to look back on in difficult times. Unless those traditions are not helpful then they will look elsewhere.

Another way to re-imagine emigration is as transplantation. Transplantation is the movement or transfer of someone or something to another place or situation. The relationship between immigrants and capitalism is divided into two groups. One group, the larger of the two works menial jobs while the other smaller group had pursued person gain and leadership. These are the working class and the middle class. The middle class possess relatively more power, places high value on individual freedom, looks for personal gain accompanied by political power and an improved future. Working class immigrants aren’t able to indulge in the same pursuits, whether public or private, for long. The separation of public and private life also is seen in the working class because the focus on the work is so large. The mentality for both groups is a combination of past and present and the attainable and just out of reach.