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date: 13 November 2019

Abstract and Keywords

This article examines the role played by the idea of transnationalism in immigrant studies during the past quarter of a century. It does so by first reviewing its developmental phase, which was influenced by a postnational perspective that contended that the salience of the nation-state was declining and by an epistemological critique of methodological nationalism. This is followed by an overview of the main claims of the critics, followed by subsequent revisions, which include a rethinking of the relationship between transnationalism and assimilation and a consideration of assertions that what is at stake is actually bi-localism or translocalism, rather than connections made at the national level. The article concludes by revising slightly Waldinger’s contention that nations remain powerful agents in determining who gets to cross borders and which individuals will be permitted to become citizens via a process of “political resocialization.”

Keywords: assimilation, bi-localism, methodological nationalism, nation-state, political resocialization, postnational, translocalism, transnationalism

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