The Immigrant Left in the United States

Edited by Paul Buhle & Dan Georgakas

Subjects: Radical History
Series: SUNY series in American Labor History
Paperback : 9780791428849, 349 pages, April 1996
Hardcover : 9780791428832, 349 pages, April 1996

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Table of contents


1. Fence Cutters, Sedicioso, and First-Class Citizens: Mexican Radicalism in America
Douglas Monroy

2. The German Immigrant Left in the United States
Stan Nadel

3. Themes in American Jewish Radicalism
Paul Buhle

4. The Italian-American Left: Transnationalism and the Quest for unity
Michael Miller Topp

5. The Polish-American Left
Mary E. Cygan

6. The Ukrainian Immigrant Left in the United States, 1880–1950
Maria Woroby

7. Greek-American Radicalism: The Twentieth Century
Dan Georgakas

8. The Arab-American Left
Michael W. Suleiman

9. The Hidden World of Asian Immigrant Radicalism
Robert G. Lee

10. Haitian Life in New York and the Haitian-American Left
Carole Charles

11. "El Salvador Is Spanish for Vietnam": A New Immigrant Left and the Politics of Solidarity
Van Gosse


Name Index

Subject Index

A transnational social history of immigrant-group involvement in radical activities in nineteenth- and twentieth-century America that provides missing links between the immigration experience, the neighborhood, the workplace, politics, and culture.


This book investigates the role immigrant radicals have played in U.S. society from the mid-nineteenth century to the present. A valuable contribution to the history of the American Left, it makes use of a wealth of material from immigrants whose everyday speech and intellectual discourse were not in the English language.

The social-history scholarship that informs the essays is innovative in method and purpose. Articles on Mexican-American, German, Jewish, Polish, Japanese, Chinese, Filipino, Italian, Ukrainian, Greek, Arab, and Haitian immigrants supply missing conceptual links between the immigration experience, the neighborhood and the workplace, and political, labor, and cultural institutions. Taken together, they offer a model study in transnational history, one of the most important new fields of historical inquiry. Included are essays by Douglas Monroy, Stan Nadel, Michael Topp, Mary E. Cygan, Maria Woroby, Michael W. Suleiman, Robert G. Lee, Carole Charles, Van Gosse, and the editors.

Paul Buhle directs the Oral History of the American Left project, Tamiment Library, New York University, and has written or edited 21 books, including Marxism in the United States; Encyclopedia of the American Left; The American Radical; and C. L. R. James: The Artist as Revolutionary. Dan Georgakas teaches in the Labor Education and Advancement Project of Queens College. He is author of Greek America at Work; associate editor of the newspaper The GreekAmerican; and coeditor of Encyclopedia of the American Left and New Directions in Greek American Studies.


"What I like most about this book is its unusual coverage of different ethnic and racial groups. Many of the essays have a transnational perspective on immigrant political culture. Most of them have important material on the contribution of women immigrant radicals and the tension between these women and their male counterparts." --Robert Asher, University of Connecticut

"I like very much that this book covers immigrant life and politics over the long run of U.S. history rather than focusing on either the past or the present. Essays on immigrant workers inevitably shed light on nationalism, transnationalism, internationalism, and their significance for class analysis. The foreign-language labor and Left press has been surveyed, and evaluated, but this rich source has not yet been mined extensively." -- Donna Gabaccia, University of North Carolina at Charlotte