PILGRIMS, COLONISTS, AND FRONTIERSMEN by Alex Simirenko

PILGRIMS, COLONISTS, AND FRONTIERSMEN

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KIRKUS REVIEW

This title may prove confusing, and even the subtitle, ""An Ethnic Community In Transition"", is not much help. What Mr. Simirenko offers us here is ""an extensive revision"" of his doctoral dissertation; he has taken the Russian community in Minneapolis, divided it into three ""generational units"" to which he has affixed the labels Pilgrim, Colonist, and Frontiersman, and then contrasted these to examine what he calls ""the dynamics of social and cultural change"". As a sociological survey, this is solid work in considerable depth, but the non-specialist should be warned that it suffers from most of the faults common to theses and dissertations: slavish quotation from standard texts in the field, excessive repetition of points to be made, a largely unconscious and not infrequently humorous reliance upon unnecessarily technical language, and an intellectual caution amounting nearly to cowardice whenever there are conclusions to be drawn. Nevertheless, as a picture in the Middletown mode of an immigrant group in the process of accommodation to the customs and values of the majority community around it, this is a most complete and interesting achievement.

Pub Date: April 27th, 1964
Publisher: Macmillan-Free Press