Towards a theory of panethnicity: Explaining the formationof panethnic boundaries among Asian Americans, 1965-1995
AuthorOkamoto, Dina Gail
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
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AbstractThis dissertation explores the ways in which ethnic boundaries are constructed and reconstructed as expressions of identity, solidarity, and mobilization. In particular, this project documents and attempts to explain the development of panethnicity---solidarity among culturally and linguistically diverse national origin groups---in order to understand the strength of structural conditions in the formation of an ethnic group and to shed light on boundary formation processes. Moving toward the construction of a general theory of panethnicity, I extend competition theory and cultural division of labor theory to make new predictions about when panethnic behavior will increase among Asian Americans from 1970 to the present. I test these new predictions about the structural conditions under which identity, solidarity, and mobilization will emerge using three dependent variables: intermarriage, organizational formation, and collective action. I constructed several data sets documenting patterns of panethnic group formation from census data, government documents, Encyclopedia of Associations, and national newspapers. Using event history, pooled time series, and logistic regression analyses, I find support for the hypothesized relationship between occupational segregation and panethnic behavior which indicates that the mechanisms of dependence and control, rather than competition, are more important for understanding the emergence of panethnic identity, solidarity, and mobilization.
Degree ProgramGraduate College