A People in Flight: Displacement of Russian Jews and Third Wave Immigration to the United States
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The group of Jewish immigrants discussed in this SIP has been designated as the third wave of Russian immigrants, a term which I will use to differentiate between the three distinct groups of Russian immigrants that have made their way to the United States since the latter part of the nineteenth century. The first wave refers to the influx of Russian Jews to the United States sparked by the Revolution of 1917. The second wave arrived after the Second World War, approximately from 1945 to the early 1950s. And the third wave refers to the large numbers of Jews that were able to leave after 1970. The third wave is unique for several reasons, which I will discuss further later. The sections will explore the migratory history of Jews in Russia; the specific history of the emigration of the third wave; the particular struggles of the third wave, including those struggles of their ambiguous collective identity, of their own self-identity, and the challenge of finding a niche in the American job market.