Primary Sources & Lesson Plans
Between 1880 and 1920, close to 20 million immigrants arrived in the United States. Concentrated primarily in urban areas, they generated concerns about their ability to fit into American society. Native-born Americans often viewed immigrant poverty and degradation as the source of urban problems, rather than as the result of the upheaval caused by industrialization and urbanization. Social welfare workers tried to reassure mainstream society that this wave of immigrants would blend in just as previous generations of new arrivals had done.
1. How does the author of the article convey a sense of immigrants as machines?
2. According to Wald, what do immigrants really need?
3. How does Wald put a human face on immigrants?
4. Is Wald optimistic about the immigrants future in America?
5. According to Wald, how has America contributed to the immigrants problems?
6. How do Walds background and training influence her attitude towards the immigrants?
7. According to Wald, why are Russian immigrants more optimistic than their American contemporaries? How will their presence benefit America?
8. What is the best way for immigrant girls to avoid immoral behavior, according to Wald?
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