Immigration and the metropolis: Reflections on urban history

  • Alejandro Portes
Articles

Abstract

This article presents an outline of the relationship between migration and the city in its evolution over time. I sketch the central aspects of this historical relation as a prelude to examining three aspects of the contemporary scene: the various determinants of contemporary labour flows; the political sources of resistance to international migration; and the renewed protagonist role of metropolitan areas as strategic nodes of the international system. As part of the latter process, I sketch the rise of transnationalism as a novel form of adaptation to immigration and as a potential response to the overriding logic of global capitalism. Implications of a migration-centred approach to cities for theory and policy are dismissed.

Keywords

immigrants urbanization transnationalism globalization social networks capitalism fr|Mots-clefs urbanisation transnationalisme globalisation réseaux sociaux capitalisme 

Résumé

Cet article donne un aperçu de la relation qui existe entre immigration et métropole au cours de son évolution dans le temps. Nous avons brossé le tableau des aspects fondamentaux de cette relation historique, comme préambule à l'examen de trois aspects différents de la scène d'aufourd'hui: les divers déterminants du flot contemporain de traveilleurs; les sources de la résistance politique à la migration internationale; et le renouvellement du rôle de protagoniste des zones urbaines comme nœuds stratégiques du réseau international. À ce propos, nous avons brossé le tableau de la montée du transnationalisme comme nouvelle forme d'adaptation à l'immigration et comme élément de contradiction à la logique prépondérante du capitalisme mondial. Les implications d'une approche centrée sur la migration vers les concentrations urbaines sur les plans théorique et politique n'ont pas été retenues.

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Copyright information

© Springer SBM 2000

Authors and Affiliations

  • Alejandro Portes
    • 1
  1. 1.Princeton UniversityPrincetonUSA

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