Alba, Richard D.. Italian Americans: into the twilight of ethnicity

Table of Contents

Publication Information

Chapter One Ethnicity: Icons And Interpretations

The Heritage Of Classical Social Theory

The United States During And After Mass Immigration

The Renewal Of Interest In Ethnicity

Assimilation Theory After 1960


Coda: The Definition Of Ethnicity


Chapter Two Immigration And The Southern Italian Background

The Mezzogiorno: Social Structure And Agricultural Conditions

Social Structure

Agricultural Conditions

The Culture Of The Mezzogiorno

The Family


The Mafia

The Departure From The Mezzogiorno



Chapter Three The Period Of Settlement: 1880–1930

The Question Of Time

The Immigrants Settle In

Patterns Of Settlement


The Second Generation Emerges

Strain And Adjustment In The Family System

The Mezzogiorno Ethos And American Schools

Organized Crime

American Reaction To Italian Immigration



Chapter Four The Emergence Of The Italian Americans: 1930–1970

The Dilemma Of The Second Generation

The Impact Of World War Ii

Social Mobility


Residential Integration And Suburbanization

Other Changes In The Direction Of Assimilation: Intermarriage, Language, Religion

Change And Continuity In The Family System

Organized Crime

Conclusion: A Resurgence Of Italian-american Ethnicity?


Chapter Five The Demography Of Italian Americans

Types Of Ethnicity Data

Who Counts As An Italian American?

Generational Structure

Geographical Distribution

Social Mobility



Chapter Six Ethnicity's Dimming: Indices Of Assimilation


Searching For Remnants Of The Family Ethos

Some Other Cultural Elements

Structural Assimilation

Organized Crime



Chapter Seven Into The Twilight Of Ethnicity

The Impact Of Ethnicity's Twilight On Americans Of European Ancestry

Explaining Ethnicity's Twilight

What Happened To The Resurgence Of Ethnicity?

The Melting Pot At Last?


Publication Information

Paragraph Subjects (OCM)

Publication Information


Title: Italian Americans: into the twilight of ethnicity

Published By: Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey: Prentice-Hall, Inc., 1985. x, 182 p.: ill.

By line: [by] Richard d. Alba

HRAF Publication Information: New Haven, Conn.: HRAF, 2000. Computer File

Culture: Italian Americans (N010)

Subjects: Theoretical orientation in research and its results (121); External migration (167); Acculturation and culture contact (177); Sociocultural trends (178); Cultural identity and pride (186); Settlement patterns (361); Occupational specialization (463); Illegal entertainment (548);

Abstract: According to Alba the prevalent image of Italian Americans is that of a cohesive group that has retained its cultural viability, while providing its members, on one hand, with a cushioning matrix for social life, and on the other, retarding their entry into mainstream American society. This conventional image and the theoretical views of ethnicity that lie behind it are analyzed here (p. viii). This document contains useful information on immigration, the southern Italian background of the emigrants, settlements in the United States, social mobility, politics, cultural change, organized crime, and demography.

Document Number: 37

Document ID: n010-037

Document Type: Monograph

Language: English

Note: Includes bibliographical references and index

Field Date: No date

Evaluation: Indigene, Sociologist-4,5

Analyst: John Beierle ; 1991

Coverage Date: ca. 1880 -1970

Coverage Place: United States

LCSH: Italian Americans


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