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Italian Immigration to Canada.docx

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Italian Studies

Italian Immigration to Canada Wednesday, March 27, 2013 11:54 PM Definitions: What is emigration?? o Emigration (exit) is the act of leaving one country or region to settle in another What is immigration?? o Immigration (in) is the act of arriving in another country for the purposes of settlement In the beginning...  Cristoforo Colombo, Genoese, sailed for Spain in 1492, came upon shores of N. America in search of India o In search of spices and other luxurious things  Giovanni Caboto (John Cabot) sailed for England in 1497, landed on shores of Newfoundland o Bona vista Habour: John Cabot said Bona vista when finally reaching there  Amerigo Vespucci of Florence explored shores of Venezuela, name given to America  Jesuit priests in New France, esp. Father Giuseppe Bressani, in Huronia (present day Ste. Marie among the Hurons, Midland, Ontario) o New France (present day Quebec) Mass Exodus  1500-1870: sizable number of Italians go to British colonies of Americas  Post-1861: by end 19th century 7 million Italians left= Italy's #1 social and economic problem o Italy became a country in 1861; it was an unstable period because they had too many people leaving  1901: record year for emigration - 533,000 Italians left  Post-WWII: 7 million more Italians left over 30 year period Why did Italians leave??  To escape political persecution  Precarious economic situation o Wanted to seek out a better future  Lack of industrialization in all parts of Italy  Agriculture sector not supported by new fiscal policies  Mechanical production replaces human resources  Disappearance of local markets o Relied on agriculture for most of there money but this was changing; which was putting people out of work  30 years post-unification-> 67% emigrants came from North (11% from Central Italy, 22% from South)  20th century: greater exodus from South due to soil exhaustion, chronic lack of money and growing debt-> Southern Question o They were not ready for the new economy; lack of money for investing o This exodus started in the North and then shifted to the South  Southerners left to buy land elsewhere; to avoid military conscription; to ensure dowry for daughters -> dwindling labour force Canada-bound  Emigration from Italy historically radiated to: Western Europe, S. America, N. America  Latin America, esp. Brazil and Argentina, did not require sponsorship = attractive to emigrants  Post-1880s, USA needed unskilled workers due to major industrial expansion-> process of industrialization also spilled over into Canada  19th century: Italian immigrants concentrated in Montreal Who were the immigrants??  Single males from the trades  Temporary/seasonal workers: worked on railroads, canal construction, natural resources (i.e. Mining)  1888: 600 labourers working on Hereford rail line in Southeastern Quebec, rural Ontario, West; recruited from USA  Employment agents (aka padroni) in Montreal and Toronto = easier recruitment Why did Italians choose Canada??  Need for unskilled workers (of 8,576 men working f
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