A Trip to the Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum

During the spring semester, one of our team members, Prof. Theodora Dragostinova, is teaching an undergraduate research seminar on migration in modern Europe. In an effort to utilize OSU resources, the class visited The Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum and analyzed historical cartoons dealing with the topic of US immigration in the late 19th-early 20th centuries. Not surprisingly, many of the issues featured in these cartoons are still being debated today.

Political Cartoons

Title: Welcome to all!
Publication: Puck
Date Created/Published: 1880.
Summary: Uncle Sam on “U.S. Ark of Refuge” welcoming immigrants, with cloud “War” over them. Description from: http://www.loc.gov/pictures/item/2002719044/


Title: Their New Jerusalem
Publication: Judge
Date Created/Published: 1892.
Summary: Allegorical cartoon showing Russian Jews driven out of Russia, entering “New Jerusalem” (New York) and prospering, thereby causing “our first families” (Dutch surnames) to be “Driven out, to the West”.
Description from: http://www.loc.gov/pictures/item/2005681047/



Title: The Immigrant
Creator: T. Bernhard Gillam
Publication: Judge
Publication Date: October 3, 1910
Summary: In the mid-1880s the number of immigrants to the United States from northern and western Europe declined sharply. At the same time, the number of immigrants from southern and eastern Europe greatly increased. The changing pattern of immigration concerned many Americans. Different perspectives on immigration are personified in this cartoon: Uncle Sam is looking for hard workers to fill the nation’s factories. The political boss wants the immigrant vote. The contractor is looking for cheap labor. The health inspector worries that immigrants carry contagious diseases. The worker fears lowered wages because immigrants were willing to work for less. The middle class man claims the new immigrants are a menace because they represent “inferior” European “races” and religions.
Description from: http://hti.osu.edu/opper/lesson-plans/immigration/images/the-immigrant


Title: Looking Backward
Creator: Joseph Keppler
Publication: Puck
Publication Date: January 11, 1893
Summary: In the mid-1880s the number of immigrants to the United States from northern and western Europe declined sharply. At the same time, the number of immigrants from southern and eastern Europe greatly increased. The changing pattern of immigration concerned many Americans who believed the newcomers represented, in the language of the time, inferior “races” of Europeans. The new immigrants were overwhelmingly non-Protestant Christians—either Roman Catholic or Orthodox—or Jewish and thus not Christian at all, which disturbed many Protestant Americans. This cartoon makes an ironic commentary on the children of immigrants rejecting the arrival of new immigrants.
Description from: http://hti.osu.edu/opper/lesson-plans/immigration/images/looking-backward


Title: The Hyphenated American
Publication: Puck
Publication Date: August 9, 1899.
Summary: Creator: J.S. Pughe Publication: Puck, Vol. 45, No. 1170 Publication Date: August 9, 1899 Description: In the mid-1880s the number of immigrants to the United States from northern and western Europe declined sharply. At the same time, the number of immigrants from southern and eastern Europe greatly increased. The changing pattern of immigration concerned many Americans. Some believed that the hyphenated-Americans (Italian-American, Jewish-American,) would never become “true” Americans. The ways political bosses integrated immigrants into corrupt urban political machines caused many native-born Americans to fear for the future of democracy. Uncle Sam sees hyphenated voters and asks, “Why should I let these freaks cast whole ballots when they are only half Americans?”
Description from: http://hti.osu.edu/opper/lesson-plans/immigration/images/the-hyphenated-american


Title: The High Tide of Immigration – A National Menace
Publication: Judge
Publication Date: October 10, 1903
Summary: Uncle Sam attempts to protect “American Ideas and Institutions” and the flag of liberty from the waves of immigrants coming in from the ocean. The caption on the image reads, “Immigration statistics for the past year show that the influx of foreigners was the greatest in our history, and also that the hard-working peasants are now being supplanted by the criminals and outlaws of all Europe.”


Title: A Crying Need for General Repairs
Publication: The Saturday Globe, Utica
Publication Date: August 27, 1901
Summary: An American Laborer pleads with Uncle Sam to repair the wall of “Immigration Restriction” because its neglect has opened the way for disreputable men to enter the country. An “Employer of Labor” in his top hat and tails happily assists a man wearing a fez as he climbs down the ladder. The image caption reads, “American Labor Calls Uncle Sam’s Attention to the Inefficiency of His Immigration Restriction Wall.”

Political Cartoons

The Opper Project, named after Ohioan cartoonist Frederick Burr Opper, has provided a lesson plan for using political cartoons to teach history.  The lesson plan covers Ohio Content Standards: Grade 11, People in Societies 1; Grade 10, Citizenship Rights and Responsibilities 4; Grade 9, Social Studies Skills and Methods 2; Grade 10, History 1.  View it and more political cartoons fromThe Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum here: http://hti.osu.edu/opper/lesson-plans/immigration

Community Event – The Trump Immigration Executive Orders: A Constitutional Perspective

Another timely event organized by our community partners at the Bexley Public Library! Tuesday, 02/28, at 7pm, in the Auditorium.

During his first week in office, President Trump issued two controversial executive orders with profound implications for immigration and refugee policy. Professor Peter M. Shane from The Ohio State University Moritz College of Law will discuss the scope of presidential power to issue executive orders and give an overview of the legal controversies surrounding the restrictions on immigrant entry and the admission of refugees, as well as the discouragement of “sanctuary jurisdictions.”


Syrian refugees ‘detrimental’ to Americans? The numbers tell a different story

A new article from Global Mobility Project team member, Jeffrey Cohen.

President Donald Trump wants to close the door on Syrian refugees, barring them indefinitely from settling in the U.S.

In an executive order signed on Jan. 27, the president wrote:

“I hereby proclaim that the entry of nationals of Syria as refugees is detrimental to the interests of the United States and thus suspend any such entry until such time as I have determined that sufficient changes have been made to the USRAP to ensure that admission of Syrian refugees is consistent with the national interest.”

USRAP stands for United States Refugee Admissions Program.

In light of the president’s executive order and the continued debate over the status of refugees in the U.S., I’d like to reexamine two questions: What are the chances that a Syrian refugee might live in your community? And what is the risk that he or she would be a terrorist?

Continue reading here

No Dancing in the Streets

This lecture by Global Mobility Project affiliate member Danielle V. Schoon might be of interest for those who are interested in dance, performance, migration, or the Romani.

Description of the lecture:

This talk presents research that examines Romani (“Gypsy”) identity in Turkey in light of conflicting claims to belonging in the city, the nation, the European Union, and the “global village.” While Turkey’s Roma are being actively integrated into minority politics, they are also facing the dissolution of their communities, traditional occupations, and cultural life as privatization and land reforms dislocate the urban poor to state housing units in the name of improvement and ‘renewal.’ At the same time, international rights organizations are supporting counter-hegemonic state narratives via minority and human rights discourses that both enable and limit the boundaries of Romani identity. The talk will compare three cases that locate the intersection of urban space, state-led reforms, and Romani belonging in dance practice: 1) competing Hidrellez events that strategically place dance on the street or on the stage; 2) dance classes for dislocated Romani children that codify and stage social dance as a folk dance; and 3) Romani performers who travel the global belly dance circuit.

Community Working Lunch

On February 9, 2017, we had our first working lunch with community members at The Jewish Community Center of Greater Columbus.  This meeting was well attended with representatives from local libraries, galleries, law offices, The City of Columbus, and refugee/immigrant organizations.

At this meeting we discussed possible collaborations, shared resources, overlapping interests, and discuss how the Global Mobility Project can be useful to community organizations. We believe that this discussion was just the first step in many fruitful endeavors.
Thank you to the Jewish Community Center of Greater Columbus for hosting us and to all who attended.


Human Rights Program at Purdue University

Our colleagues over at Purdue University have built a program exploring issues of human rights.  Students and professors from the program joined us for the livestream of Peter Gatrell’s lecture: Refugees in Modern History: A European Perspective.  More information about this exciting program, including their mission statement, can be read below:

Mission Statement

As a moral principle and political force, Human Rights belongs inescapably to the experience of globalization. Everywhere you look, today’s leading political, economic, and cultural questions turn on disputes over the meaning and role of human rights. How we frame and use the language of human rights shapes our relationship with the world and our understanding of our own humanity.

The field of Human Rights is intrinsically interdisciplinary. While housed in the department of Philosophy, the Human Rights Program integrates studies in history, theory, and application. The program plays a key role in fulfilling the mission of the College of Liberal Arts, advancing intellectual synergies across the university with scholarly training, activity, and community engagement. In so doing, it brings the value of the study of the liberal arts to students in other colleges.

We are committed to:

  •  Fostering an environment of inquiry and creating a space for the open exchange of ideas about Human Rights;
  •  Providing vital practical training, enabling students to hone research, writing, and critical thinking skills, and to acquire valuable experience;
  •  Exploring how Human Rights connects us to other people, places, and times;
  •  Continuing to promote and redefine the impact of a liberal arts education.

Learn more about the Human Rights Program at Purdue University here.

Anish Kapoor Wins Genesis Prize, Gives $1m to Help Refugees

The artist is currently featured, together with others, at the Pizzuti Collection, one of our community partners!

British artist Sir Anish Kapoor is donating his $1 million award for being named the 2017 Genesis Prize Laureate to help alleviate the Syrian refugee crisis and expand the engagement of the Jewish Community in the global effort to support refugees. His pledge continues the tradition of Genesis Prize Laureates directing the $1 million award to meaningful causes.

Known as the “Jewish Nobel,” the annual Genesis Prize was established in 2012 to recognize individuals who have “attained excellence and international renown in their chosen professional fields, and who inspire others through their engagement and dedication to the Jewish community and the State of Israel.”

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Upcoming talk about Migration Policy in the Russian Federation

This talk may be of interest to those who study migration and mobility.

Regulating Flows of People Across Eurasia: Migration Policy in the Russian Federation

A Talk by Professor Sergei Abashin
European University at St. Petersburg
Tuesday, March 28, 3:00 – 4:30pm
Enarson Classroom Building 100

Join the Center for Slavic and East European Studies for a bilingual discussion about current migration policy within the Russian Federation. Since the collapse of the Soviet Union, Russia has seen 25 years of migration flows as populations have adjusted to new state boundaries in the region, the aftermath of forced resettlement of populations during the Soviet Union, and the economic migration of populations from neighboring countries to work in Russia. With increased attention on migrants and immigration in countries across the world, this talk will focus on the flows of people within the Russian Federation, their causes and effects, and government and policy responses. Sergei Abashin, a professor of anthropology at the European University at St. Petersburg, is a specialist in migration studies and Central Asian nationality building who has done extensive field work in Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, and Kyrgyzstan. The talk will be delivered in Russian, with simultaneous English translation. Students of Russian, as well as faculty and the general public who are interested in the topic but do not know Russian are encouraged to attend.

Click the image to view the flyer for the event