Migration: c. 1750 - c. 1900

AP Concept: 5.4 Global Migration
Key Concepts
  • Demographic changes influenced migration
  • Migrants relocated for a number of reasons
  • The large-scale nature of migration led to unprecedented demographic and social changes
New Economic Opportunities
  • Migration increased during this period primarily as people searched for new economic opportunities
    • Industrialization and agricultural innovations quickly exhausted traditional supplies of land it became harder for farmers to make a living
    • Growing nationalism in Europe also pushed certain ethnic and religious groups out of their traditional homelands
    • Europeans migrated to the United States, Canada, Latin America, Australia, and South Africa in search of cheap land to farm, as well as freedom from persecution
    • Within empires, migrants searched for cheap and abundant land, as well
    • Subjects of the Qing empire moved out to frontier regions, in both state-sponsored and self-guided moves
    • Workers also moved from farms to cities as industrialization increased, leading to urban growth
  • These shifts led to profound social and demographic changes within countries
  • New immigrants often established self-contained enclaves that sought to replicate their culture and lifestyle from home as their culture gradually blended with their host's culture, new traditions developed
  • Immigrants and their children often intermarried with other immigrants or natives, again creating a more heterogeneous culture
  • As more and more migrants moved to cities, urban centers became more populous than the surrounding farmland
  • Migrants were often subjected to regulations blocking their entry into new nations
  • In the United States, for example, the 1882 Chinese Exclusion Act sought to prevent any Chinese immigrants from settling in the country for 10 years, claiming that Chinese immigrants threatened the social order
Forced Migration
  • While slavery decreased or ended during this period, some slaves were still brought illegally from Africa to Brazil and the United States up through the middle of the 19th century
  • Indentured servants still traveled from Asia and Africa to tropical regions of the Americas, Caribbean, Africa, and Oceania
  • Migrants came to work on plantations, usually for five to seven years, in return for free passage, food, shelter, clothing, and compensation
  • Most migrants were men gender roles in their home societies shifted, as women took on roles that men traditionally had done

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National Identity: c. 1750 - c. 1900