Paired Texts > Immigration to the United States
We've identified these texts as great options for text pairings based on similar themes, literary devices, topic, or writing style. Supplement your lesson with one or more of these options and challenge students to compare and contrast the texts. To assign a paired text, click on the text to go to its page and click the "Assign Text" button there.
This informational text describes the hard lives of Mexican-Americans and immigrants who became migrant workers throughout the 20th century in the United States.Pair “Mexican Migrant Workers in the 20th Century” with “Immigration to the United States” to provide students with additional information on Mexican immigrants. Ask students to discuss why people immigrated to the United States from Mexico. How does each text emphasize how immigrants from certain countries face opposition in the United States? How does “Mexican Migrant Workers in the 20th Century” show how immigrants contribute to the United States?
In Alberto Ríos' poem "The Border: A Double Sonnet," a speaker describes a border.Pair “The Border: A Double Sonnet” with “Immigration to the United States” and ask students to discuss the division of the world. How do both texts explore who enforces borders around the world and who is impacted by them?
Anzia Yezierska (1880-1970) was a Jewish-American immigrant and novelist known for her writing on immigration, assimilation, and Jewish-American lives. "America and I" is Yezierska's short essay about her struggles adapting to her new country.Pair “America and I” with “Immigration to the United States” and ask students to discuss why immigrants decide to move to America. What brought Anzia Yezierska to America? How did her experiences in America compare to her expectations? How do the two texts examine how immigrants have been made to feel unwelcome in the United States?
In Julia Alvarez's short story "Names/Nombres," the author explores the various names she has received over the years.Pair "Immigration to the United States" with "Names/Nombres" and ask students to discuss how attitudes and laws towards immigrants have changed over time in the United States. How did Julia's family's experience immigrating to the United States compare to the experiences of others throughout American history?
In "The Capital of Irish America," Cynthia Hatch describes how Boston became a center for Irish culture in the United States.Pair “Immigration to the United States” with “The Capital of Irish America” to have students learn more about the experience of immigrants in America. How does the author of “Immigration to the United States” explain the wave of Irish immigration in the 1800s? How does this wave of immigration compare to other waves of immigration by people from different nationalities? In what ways are the struggles that immigrants face today similar to and different from those the Irish in Boston faced in “The Capital of Irish America”?