Why America is Not Exceptional: Immigration and

Why America is not Exceptional
Immigration and National Identity in
Europe and the United States
Eric Kaufmann,
[email protected]
Conceptual Frameworks
•Decline of
Jose C. Orozco’s Anglo-America
Anglo-Saxon Ethnic Origins, 1776
Americans: "the children of Israel
in the wilderness, led by a
cloud by day and a pillar of
fire by night; and on the other
side, Hengist and Horsa, the
Saxon chiefs from whom we
claim the honour of being
descended, and whose
political principles and form
of government we have
assumed." – Thomas
Jefferson, 1776 (quoted in
Horsman 1981: 22, emphasis
Anglo-Saxon Origins, 1889
"The fathers followed Boon[e]
or fought at King's Mountain;
the sons marched south with
Jackson to overcome the
Creeks and beat back the
British; the grandsons died at
the Alamo or charged to
victory at San Jacinto. They
were doing their share of a
work that began with the
conquest of Britain, that
entered on its second and
wider period after the defeat
of the Spanish Armada, that
culminated in the marvelous
growth of the United States”
– Theodore Roosevelt, 1889
Two Traditions
• “The asylum of all
nations...the energy of Irish,
Germans, Swedes, Poles
and Cossacks, and all the
European tribes, of the
Africans and Polynesians,
will construct a new
race...as vigorous as the
new Europe which came
out of the smelting pot of
the Dark Ages” - Emerson
• “It cannot be maintained by
any candid person that the
African race have ever
occupied or do promise
ever to occupy any very
high place in the human
family...The Irish cannot; the
American Indian cannot; the
Chinese cannot. Before the
energy of the Caucasian
race all other races have
quailed and done
obeisance” – Emerson 1846
1960s Multiculturalism and Reaction
• “I define integration…not as a
flattening process of assimilation
but as equal opportunity,
accompanied by cultural diversity,
in an atmosphere of mutual
tolerance”- Roy Jenkins, Labour
MP & Home Secretary, 1966
• “We must be mad, literally mad,
as a nation to be permitting the
annual inflow of some 50,000
dependants, who are for the
most part the material of the
future growth of the immigrant
descended population. It is like
watching a nation busily engaged
in heaping up its own funeral
pyre. So insane are we that we
actually permit unmarried
persons to immigrate for the
purpose of founding a family with
spouses and fiancées whom they
have never seen.” – Enoch Powell,
White Flight in Europe
USA, 1970-2000
Source: Andersson,
Hammarstedt, Neuman 2012
Share of Minorities in 1970
Source: data from Card, Mas &
Rothstein 2008
Why America is not Exceptional
Immigration and National Identity in
Europe and the United States
Eric Kaufmann,
[email protected]

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