To accomplish the task of writing this Immigrant paper, I interviewed four individuals that immigrated here to the United States. I found one person who immigrated from china, one from Jamaica, and two from Italy. I found there to be quite a difference in each of the characters, especially from china to Italy.
Matasja Liu is my interviewee from China. She came here with her husband about 25 years ago, because she was unsatisfied with her original country. She explained to me that china had oppressive policies, and ?America sounded like a place where you could have a better future for your children and for yourself?. Matasja liked many things about America, including the ability to vote, the ability to have one?s own religion, the amount of opportunity, and she especially liked the ability to have more than one child, considering that she has two children. One freighting incident that she explained to me about how she likes America includes her personal safety. ?Not being worried about being dragged off in the middle of the night or beaten to death? this feeling came because this happened to her mother. One night, she was dragged from her home, and severally beaten, most every bone in her body was broken. Matasja told me it was because of the communists taking over. What Matasja told me she doesn?t like about this country is that the people are spoiled. She thinks that we don’t know how good we have it here. I agree also. She said ?We expect everything handed to them on a silver platter?, ?they expect get rich quick plans? ?they?re apathetic? Matasja misses her family she left behind in China. She goes back often, but she is still sad that they don?t live closer to her. Her advise to others immigrating here from China, or any other country, is ?work hard, save the money wisely, and you can be successful.? Matasja told me how her and her husband came over here with less than one thousand dollars. And now, twenty something years later, her and her husband, have 2 children in ivy league schools, live in a $900,000 home. Quite an impressive story would like to have that kind of ambition, to be so successful.
Pasquali Fedo was my second interview. He is Italian great grandfather of a good friend of mine. When he came to this country, his last name changed from Fida, to Fedo. I diddn?t ask, but I think he might have changed it because he wasn?t proud of the name he was born with. Pasquali came to this country ?to escape the bad parts of the family, who had done the family name in justice? Pasquali likes the USA because of the freedom. he likes the freedom to speak, the freedom to write, and just more freedom without fear. What he told me that he misses most about Italy, is the wine. Fedo says that it is more pure there. What he likes most about the United States is the government, he says it helps everyone, and he is very proud of it. In fact, he is very proud of this country all together, when I asked him what he dislikes, he could not tell me. What he said is ?Nothing! This country loves one another? what Pasquala said to my question ?What advice would you give to others who are coming to the USA, either from your own country or from other countries?? he replied: ?do not bring your country with you, and never quit?
Next on my list is a fellow racecar driver named Sean Ivy. Sean immigrated here from Jamaica. He came to the United States, for the better schools, with the intentions of returning to Jamaica with his new degree and being successful there. This did not happen though, Sean got a job offer in New York City, and has taken that job, and is very satisfied with it. He visits Jamaica quite often though. He told me that the USA differs from Jamaica in many ways, including a totally different culture. Sean says that we have ?less quality of life?, and that we ?work for the weekends?, Sean says that Jamaica is more laid back. Sean also says that we have more stability in terms of employment and more employment opportunities. Sean also made it a point to tell me, that obviously he could have moved back if he wanted, but he likes the lifestyle here, and is planning on staying for quite some time, Even though he misses his family, and his social circuit, and friends he left behind in Jamaica. Sean said that the best thing about the United States is the stability, and the job opportunities in his area of expertise (which is the ?IT? field). Sean told me quite a few things that he dislikes about America. 1. Racism. 2. Ignorance and narrow mindedness of the average American. 3. Over emphasis on work, and not enough on quality of life issues. 4. The hypocritical way in which most people approach a situation. Then I asked Sean what advice he would give others that are immigrating here from his country, or other countries, and he replied ?I would advise them to set solid goals when coming here. Make a plan, if you don’t do that then you will not achieve?. He thinks that most immigrants have solid goals when they come here though, either via vocation or education. Especially those from the islands, so they come here to do well, relatively.
Next I went to a the most ?immigrant? of my interviewee?s. My friend?s parents came here from Italy about 25 years ago, but they never let go of their culture, and really never learned the language. They speak broken English, so I couldn?t get as much information out of them(her) as I wanted, but it went well anyway. Her name is Salvatrice Perconti. Like I said, she came to this country from Italy (Sicily). She came to the USA with her husband, to find work. What she said about how the USA is different from Italy, is that America is busier, more industrial, and there is more money to be made. During this interview, I took it upon myself to sort out her broken English, and say things like ?Industrial? when she just tried to explain things like more factories, and works.. because she doesn?t understand how to speak English as well as most people. Salvatrice told me about how she misses her family, and the friends she left behind. But, she likes many things about the USA, mostly money related things though. She says there is more opportunity for work, to succeed, and it is much more affordable to live nicely here. She doesn?t like the American culture though, she says that the people here have no tradition, and are way too materialistic (again, here I used my own words). About the question concerning what she would tell other immigrants that were coming to the USA, she replied ?you must be ready to work very hard for what you want?. but again, she told me about how in Italy, sometimes you cannot work hard enough to get things you want, because the opportunity just isn?t there.
The reactions I got from each individual were very unique. Matasja, from China, didn?t show much reaction to any question at all. I later on asked her daughter (my friend) if any of the questions bothered her, or made her feel funny, and Natasha just told me, ?why, they are just questions? I tried to explain how some questions might bring up bad memories, or good ones. Natasha understood, but she explained to me that her culture isn?t very emotional when it comes to questions like this. I was too nervous to talk to her mother about how she felt, I?m glad that Natasha understood. My friend?s Italian great grandfather was very excited to talk about America. Everything I asked him sparked him to talk happily about the USA. I know he left Italy because of a problem, but Mr. Fedo loves America passionately. I later also talked to Mike, his great grandson, and Mike told me he loves to talk about America, and that he is very patriotic to the USA. My racecar friend Sean from Jamaica, had a very different interview. What I got from his reactions, is that he is very fond of the American system, and that he doesn?t like the people here. I can totally agree with him, being a black man, you lean quickly about the ignorance of most people. He said things like ?We in America tend to be too focused on just our culture, and we need to be educated about others, and learn to be more tolerable about others? Sean and I actually ended up talking for quite some time about America, mainly about what happened on 9/11/01. Sean seemed very upset with how selfish Americans are, and how rude and unappreciative we are also. Sean gave me the most negative interview, but he says that he is still very happy to be here, and never complains about it. Salvatrice, my Sicilian Italian immigrant, seemed to enjoy the interview. She seemed happy that I took an interest in her past. She gave out her interview, very nicely, and happily, but she also told me that me asking the questions made her think of all the things she left behind in Italy. I had the most trouble with this interview because of the communication barrier. But, the information I got was very helpful, and I learned from her.
I learned from everyone that I interviewed. I learned quite a bunch of things about communication, heritage, and history from talking to these people. Everyone was very nice to me, and gave an abundance of information that I will never forget. I enjoyed doing this assignment, and talking to all of these great people. I have another racing buddy that came to America from Germany when he was a teenager, but he hasn?t been around, so I missed out on interviewing him. I think I?ll discuss things with him next time I see him, because I am now interested in his responses to these questions. I enjoyed this assignment all together