From Factory Workers to Owners: Informality, Recurseo, and Entrepreneurship in the Formation of the Peruvian Community of Paterson, New Jersey 1960-2001
MetadataShow full item record
Latino immigrants have been largely overgeneralized as low-income, subservient laborers. However, entrepreneurship and informality have been used by Peruvians as vehicles to forge economic independence in the United States. This dissertation demonstrates how Peruvians in Paterson, New Jersey have utilized entrepreneurship to establish the first and most visible enclave of Peruvians in the United States since the 1960s. Central to the story of entrepreneurship and community development is the concept of recurseo, a slang word used to describe the informal and creative means in which working class Peruvians utilize their labor experiences and kinship ties to acquire better economic opportunities. By using informal mechanisms and strategies of recurseo, Peruvian migrants in Paterson were able to leave their blue-collar jobs and establish their own businesses. These entrepreneurs opened restaurants, insurance offices, travel agencies, and small corporations that created an emergent ethic market for products and services that would permanently alter the social and economic landscape of Paterson. This investigation reveals that Peruvians relied principally on informal and resourceful mechanisms to become businessmen, organize themselves as entrepreneurs, and contribute to the development of a thriving ethnic enclave. Through fifty oral history interviews and the use of archival material from consulates and county tax offices, this project challenges the oversimplified portrayal of Peruvian immigrants, demonstrating their use of alternative economic strategies to achieve wealth, stability, and cultural continuity. Bourdieusian perspectives on immigration, particularly the concepts of habitus and capital, are utilized to frame Peruvian migrants’ experiences with informality and ethnic entrepreneurship in the process of community building.
Showing items related by title, author, creator and subject.
Coskun, Ozge (August 201)The purpose of this research is to explore the effects of education, health, and family interaction on the professional and social integration of Turkish immigrants who are living in the United States, specifically in the ...
The impact of paternal involvement and United States stay length on Latino youth’s depressive symptoms Bishop, Christine; Alamadari, Sara Makki (University of Houston Graduate College of Social Work, 2018)Latino youth in the United States are more at-risk for depression than youth of other ethnic backgrounds. This manuscript assesses the impacts of sex, age, United States stay length, and whether or not Latino children ...
Cho, Gayoung (2011-12)The number of Korean migrants in the United States is continuously on the rise. As immigrants, they adapt to their new environment, including their understanding of health. This study explored the experience of Korean women ...