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English Diaspora in North America : Migration, Ethnicity and Association 1730s-1950s (Hardcover) (Tanja
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Ethnic associations once were vibrant features of societies, such as the United States and Canada, which attracted large numbers of immigrants. While the transplanted cultural lives of the Irish, Scots, and Europeans have received much attention, the English are far less widely explored. It is assumed the English were not an ethnic community; that they lacked the alienating experiences associated with immigration and thus possessed few elements of diasporas. This deeply researched new book questions this assumption. Instead it shows that English associations once were widespread, taking hold in colonial America, spreading to Canada and then encompassing all of the empire. Celebrating saints days, expressing pride in the monarch and national heroes, providing charity to the national poor, and forging mutual aid societies mutual, were all features of English life overseas. In fact, the English simply resembled other immigrant groups too much to be dismissed as the unproblematic, invisible immigrants.