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By Milton M. Gordon

The 1st full-scale sociological survey of the assimilation of minorities in the US, this vintage paintings provides major conclusions concerning the difficulties of prejudice and discrimination in the US and gives confident feedback for the fulfillment of a fit stability between societal, subgroup, and person wishes.

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Additional info for Assimilation in American Life: The Role of Race, Religion and National Origins

Sample text

Men of the same social class will thus share certain cultural values and patterns which distinguish them from Americans of other class backgrounds. Upward social mobility, then, involves the need for learning and adopting values and behavior in accordance with the stand- THE SUBSOCIETY AND THE SUBCULTURE 47 ards of the class into which the upwardly mobile person is moving. We have now isolated four factors or social categories which play a part in creating subsocieties within the national society that is America.

THE SUBSOCIETY AND THE SUBCULTURE 41 siderable extent—that is, those who are high in economic power tend to be high in political power and in social status, and so on. Each of the variables, in other words, "converts" easily to the other, and there is a process of constant interaction in which greater economic power allows one to secure higher social status, while higher social status, in turn, makes it easier to secure additional economic power. However, the variables do not vary together perfectly and there is always some overlapping or lack of synchronization when large numbers of people are being considered.

THE SUBSOCIETY AND THE SUBCULTURE With these concepts of "social structure" and "culture" in mind, we may now go on to develop the argument. The ethnic group, I have said, bears a special relationship to the social structure of a modern complex society which distinguishes it from all small groups and most other large groups. It is this: within the ethnic group there develops a network of organizations and informal social relationships which permits and encourages the members of the ethnic group to remain within the confines of the group for all of their primary relationships and some of their secondary relationships throughout all the stages of the life-cycle.

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