Archive for October 13, 2008

Three More Examples of Student “Breakthroughs” About USSR Immigration

More examples, besides yesterday’s blog, show what my Kazakh students are capable of doing in following my assignment concerning immigration in the former Soviet Union.  They had to search for one scholarly journal article on the research databases and give feedback about it writing how it compared with American immigration (1820-1995).  I am very proud of my students, the ones who are “getting it.” The third example shows good data but I am not clear what her source is because her in-text citation may have been a quote from a quote.  Other students, however, still do not know what I am asking of them concerning APA formatting style. This all takes time (sigh).


Example #1 – M.T


 According to Lewis (1971) Soviet Union once was the largest country in the world and according to the 1959 census there were 109 nationalities living there. In the period of 1926 to 1939 due to the extreme famine and depletion of the cattle stock the number of Ukrainians decreased for more than 3 millions and number of Kazakhs decreased by more than 900,000 people, however the population of other nationalities did increased. Not only migration affected the fast growing minor nationalities in the Soviet Union factors such as high birth rate contributed to the overall increase too. There were two types of migration in the Soviet Union: retaliatory and strategic. Sometimes even the whole ethnic groups were pushed to the resettlement. Over the period of 1946-1962 88,000 of Ukrainian peasant families were resettled. Armenians scientists and students, which created total of 32% of the population, migrated to the RSFSR. In Siberia between 1959 and 1963 the number of people who left it exceeded number of in-migrants by 25000.

As we can see from these examples migration is not always driven by the desire for better life, like it is in the example of United States. In the Soviet Union migration didn’t took into consideration people’s will to move or to stay. Soviet Union’s migration is also different because its’ borders were closed, it was very hard to get in and out of this country, therefore the number of immigrants was negligible and the migration was happening among the Socialist republics. While changes in the immigration trend bring change to the U.S. population.


Lewis, E. G. (1971) Migration and language in the U.S.S.R.. International Migration Review 5(2), 147-179.


Example #2 – by R.A.

An article written by Kulischer (1944) is focused on demographic changes in population of Soviet Union and the streams of migratory movement, which is mainly internal migration. In the period of 1926-1939 there was increase of urban population as a result of migration from rural areas. This urbanization caused a small population growth in rural areas, whereas in industrial regions there was an upward trend. After German invasion, the total number of people evacuated from occupied zones was about 12,000,000. Since the evacuation was made mainly from industrial area, refugees were sent directly to urban regions, where their labor could be used. Such movements to cities and towns caused overcrowding in population, and therefore difficulties with housing. Change in ethnicity of local population is also the result of massive movement. So, in comparison with U.S, immigration in Soviet Union had another trend. I mean in U.S we see immigrants coming from various countries and even continents. However, in Soviet Union there was another picture of immigration. The main source for immigration in Soviet Union was evacuation from occupied areas during the war to other less dangerous parts of a country.


Kulischer, E. M. (1944). Recent Migration in the Soviet Union. American Sociological Review, 9(3), 223-228.

Example #3 – K.S.

         In compare with America, Kazakhstan have different periods of migration.  In our country like in other post-Soviet countries, we can divide it in to 3 parts.  Before Soviet Union, during Soviet Union and after our countries became independent.  During Soviet power, Kazakhstan was the place where government move people of many nationalities:  Germans, Turks, Poles, Chechens, Jewish, Korean, Tatars and others.  However after independent many of them migrated…As we can see since 1991 til 1999 (year of census) our country leave 1,852,250 of peple among them was 1,123,960 Slavic, 428,710 Germans, 42,368 Tatars and other.  Immigration reached its peak in 1994 when more than 480,000 people left the country.  However, also many Kazakhs were returned from Mongolia, Iran, Turkey and China.

         Today population of Kazakhstan is about 15 mln people.  At the present our migration or purposes why people migrate to our country became more similar to America’s.  Kazakhstan is the country with well developing economy; as a result attractions of our labour market is much higher then in other CIS countries.  It also happens because in our country we don’t have enough labour force.  Among migrants we can single out three major nationalities: Uzbeks, Kyrgyz, Tajiks.  Wages in these countries are very low, especially in compare with Kazakhstan.  People came to our country for different periods of time and most of immigrants work in three main industries:  construction, convenience services and agriculture.

         I think we are all people and we always want a better life.  As we talk in Russian “There is good where we are not.”  Level of development of America and Kazakhstan is different, but better then in other countries.  People always will migrate to these countries.



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