Imagined Homes: Soviet German Immigrants in Two Cities
Employing a cross-national comparative framework, Hans Werner reveals that the process of integration into a new urban environment was greatly influenced by how the immigrants imagined their settlement experiences would be. Winnipeg’s migrants chose a receiving society where they knew they would again be a minority group in a foreign country, while Bielefeld’s newcomers believed they were “going home” and were unprepared for the conflict between their imagined homeland and the realities of post-war Germany. Werner also shows that differences in the way the two receiving societies perceived immigrants, and the degree to which secularization and the sexual and media revolutions influenced these perceptions were crucially important in the immigrant experience.
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