Photo of Paris' metro entrance

© Ernesto Castañeda.

Photos of Paris © Ernesto Castañeda.

Castañeda, Ernesto. 2018. Immigration and Categorical Inequality: Migration to the City and the Birth of Race and Ethnicity. New York, NY: Routledge. Available here

Immigration and Categorical Inequality explains the general processes of migration, the categorization of newcomers in urban areas as racial or ethnic others, and the mechanisms that perpetuate inequality among groups. Inspired by the pioneering work of Charles Tilly on chain migration, transnational communities, trust networks, and categorical inequality, renowned migration scholars apply Tilly’s theoretical concepts using empirical data gathered in different historical periods and geographical areas ranging from New York to Tokyo and from Barcelona to Nepal. The contributors of this volume demonstrate the ways in which social boundary mechanisms produce relational processes of durable categorical inequality. This understanding is an important step to stop treating differences between certain groups as natural and unchangeable. This volume will be valuable for scholars, students, and the public in general interested in understanding the periodic rise of nativism in the United States and elsewhere.


1.      Understanding Inequality, Migration, Race, and Ethnicity from a Relational Perspective.  Ernesto Castañeda

2.      Migration and Categorical Inequality.  Douglas S. Massey

3.      Immigration or Citizenship? Two Sides of One Social History.
Josiah Heyman

4.      Stigmatizing Immigrant Day Labor: Boundary-Making and the Built Environment in Long Island, New York.  Ernesto Castañeda and Kevin R. Beck

5.      Migration-Trust Networks: Unveiling the Social Networks of International Migration.  Nadia Y. Flores-Yeffal

6.      Ethnic Weddings: Reinventing the Nation in Exile. Randa Serhan

7.      Trust Networks and Durable Inequality among Korean Immigrants in Japan.  Hwaji Shin

8.      Ethnic Centralities in Barcelona: Foreign-Owned Businesses between “Commercial Ghettos” and Urban Revitalization.  Pau Serra del Pozo

9.      Remittance-Driven Migration in Spite of Microfinance? The Case of Nepalese Households.  Bishal Kasu, Ernesto Castañeda, and Guangqing Chi

Castañeda, Ernesto and Cathy Lisa Schneider. 2017. Collective Violence, Contentious Politics, and Social Change: A Charles Tilly Reader. New York, NY: Routledge. 

Charles Tilly is among the most influential American sociologists of the last century. For the first time, his pathbreaking work on a wide array of topics is available in one comprehensive reader. This manageable and readable volume brings together many highlights of Tilly’s large and important oeuvre, covering his contribution to the following areas: revolutions and social change; war, state making, and organized crime; democratization; durable inequality; political violence; migration, race, and ethnicity; narratives and explanations.

The book connects Tilly’s work on large-scale social processes such as nation-building and war to his work on micro processes such as racial and gender discrimination. It includes selections from some of Tilly’s earliest, influential, and out of print writings, including The Vendée; Coercion, Capital and European States; the classic “War Making and State Making as Organized Crime;” and his more recent and lesser-known work, including that on durable inequality, democracy, poverty, economic development, and migration. Together, the collection reveals Tilly’s complex, compelling, and distinctive vision and helps place the contentious politics approach Tilly pioneered with Sidney Tarrow and Doug McAdam into broader context. The editors abridge key texts and, in their introductory essay, situate them within Tilly’s larger opus and contemporary intellectual debates. The chapters serve as guideposts for those who wish to study his work in greater depth or use his methodology to examine the pressing issues of our time. Read together, they provide a road map of Tilly’s work and his contribution to the fields of sociology, political science, history, and international studies. This book belongs in the classroom and in the library of social scientists, political analysts, cultural critics, and activists.

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Castañeda, Ernesto. 2018. A Place to Call Home: Immigrant Exclusion and Urban Belonging in New York, Paris, and Barcelona. Stanford , CA: Stanford University Press.

As immigrants settle in new places, they are faced with endless uncertainties that prevent them from feeling that they belong. From language barriers, to differing social norms, to legal boundaries separating them from established residents, they are constantly navigating shifting and contradictory expectations to both assimilate and to honor their native culture. In A Place to Call Home, Ernesto Castañeda offers a uniquely comparative portrait of immigrant expectations and experiences. Drawing on fourteen years of ethnographic observation, and hundreds of interviews with documented and undocumented immigrants and their children, Castañeda sets out to determine how different locations can aid or disrupt the process of immigrant integration. Focusing on New York City, Paris, and Barcelona—immigration hubs in their respective countries— he examines the experiences of both Latino and North African migrants, and finds that subjective understandings, national and regional history, local contexts, and religious institutions are all factors that profoundly impact the personal journey to belonging.

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