The Immigrant Advantage: What We Can Learn from Newcomers

The Immigrant Advantage: What We Can Learn from Newcomers to America about Health, Happiness and Hope From an award winning journalist comes a fascinating exploration of the life enhancing customs that immigrant groups have brought with them to the US and of how we can all improve our lives by adapting themWith the subject of immigration hotly debated across the nation, one journalist offers a unique perspective on the subject Claudia Kolker takes us into immigrant communities from a range of cultures, from Mexican to Jamaican and South Asian, to introduce us to a set of fascinating customs that enrich the lives of many in those communities and can make life enjoyable and even healthier for us all pAccording to ldquo the immigrant paradox,rdquo discovered by social scientists, first generation immigrants in the US tend to be healthier than the average American As Kolker discovered during her extensive research, the customs they bring with them may be one reason for this The Immigrant Advantage details seven of these, including Vietnamese money clubs, Mexican cuarentena, a forty day period of rest for new mothers after childbirth , Vietnamese monthly rice allotments a service that provides individuals and families with hot meals delivered right to their doors every night , and Jamaican multigenerational households, which offer appealing solutions to issues we all face, whether itrsquo s how to save money, make time for a home cooked meal, or afford college pTaking us into the living rooms, kitchens, restaurants, and neighborhoods of specific communities across the country from Chicago to Houston to Nashville and introducing us to an array of diverse and meaningful customs with rich detail and a personal touch, even trying many of them herself, Kolker presents journalism at its best, educating readers with stories that engage their curiosity and enrich their lives


10 thoughts on “The Immigrant Advantage: What We Can Learn from Newcomers to America about Health, Happiness and Hope

  1. says:

    This is an engaging overview of several immigrant traditions that bolster people s well being The author, who comes from European Jewish and Mexican families, summarizes research into medicine and social sciences and then contextualizes it by interviewing people on the ground.The common thread is that newcomers to the US are forced to rely on interpersonal networks


  2. says:

    It seems that we re constantly bombarded with misleading, negative press regarding immigrants From the crime rate to poaching jobs to inhumane customs like genital mutilation, this book should be required reading for those who choose to believe the negative hype coming from the current administration.In this book we learn about Latina tradition of cuarentena, which involv


  3. says:

    Enjoyed the contents Too bad about the title though it makes it sound like immigrants don t have disadvantages to overcome and thus rely on the contents of the chapter to see them through They can t get loans, so they have private money clubs If someone steals or cheats, that money is gone with no recourse They can t afford child care options after giving birth so they have fam


  4. says:

    This book is so needed Especially right now I loved it.


  5. says:

    Good overview about various immigrant cultural traditions, but a limited shallow overview that merely scratches the surface of intricate immigrant lives Good overview about various immigrant cultural traditions, but a limited shallow overview that merely scratches the surface of intricate immigrant lives


  6. says:

    I wavered between three and four stars as I rated this book It contains thought provoking and well researched information It was an informative read that gives me much to ponder after reading However, I ultimately feel the book is too intellectually shallow to warrant a rating higher than three stars It samples and celebrates immigrant traditions with only a passing consideration of the challeng


  7. says:

    As a lot of us do, I d grown up acutely aware how much I owed to being American My insouciance about the future My unhindered education The chutzpah to go, as a single woman, anywhere that I pleased In this very interesting non fiction exploration memoir, Kolker examines 8 behaviours and cultural concepts brought to the USA by immigrant groups, and how these behaviours lead to far higher quality of li


  8. says:

    I really enjoyed certain chapters of this book namely Chapters 1, 2, 4, and 8 The remainder I felt were rather superficial and perhaps even dated For example, the chapter on South Asian mating patterns mentions that women are considered to be past their prime after age 25 These are trends which have been changing for a while, just as mainstream Caucasian marital patterns are trending towards later age in ma


  9. says:

    Since it was an ARC, I was already expecting editing errors, so the few that remained didn t distract me from the content within This was a fantastic read There were very interesting case studies and examples of the diversity that benefits this country, rather than takes away from it I loved the idea of a hui, or money club, though I m sure that many Americans would be distinctly uncomfortable with it and while p


  10. says:

    Having heard an interview with Claudia Kolker about this book, I decided to read it, but by the end I was very disappointed The Immigrant Advantage is a quick read and Claudia Kolker holds your interest by including many stories of recent immigrants and those of her family The structure of the book is that a different lesson is presented in each chapter I found the first three chapters very interesting, but from there


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