Based on 260 surveys and 47 in-depth interviews, this study combines quantitative and qualitative research to explore the level and characteristics of immigrant incorporation in Beardstown and Monmouth. It assesses the advancement of immigrants in the immigration/ residency/citizenship process, the immigrants’ level of cultural integration (via language, their connectedness with other members of society, and their relationships with neighbors), the degree and characteristics of discrimination against immigrants in these two towns, and the extent to which immigrants participate in different social and political activities and trust government institutions.
Immigrants in new destinations are likely to be poorer, to be less educated, and to have weaker English-language skills than immigrants in traditional destinations. Studying how this population negotiates the obstacles to and opportunities for incorporation is crucial.
“At the Core and in the Margins is a major contribution to the emerging literature on Mexican immigration to new destinations in the United States. Drawing on a wealth of in-depth interviews and original survey data from two rural communities in Illinois, Albarracín provides important new insights into the process of incorporation for the country’s largest immigrant group.”
—Philip J. Williams, coauthor of Living “Illegal”: The Human Face of Unauthorized Immigration