DAY 39.

Nordic-American breakfast

Marianne picks me up to annual Nordic-American breakfast event that gathers around 700 hundred immigrant descent of Scandic counties. It is a sea of Norwegian sweaters! There were three speakers but Alan C. Page‘s speech got most of my attention. He compared the struggle of immigrants to struggle of black people, pointing out the differences and similarities. It brought fresh, broaden point of view to the celebration and emphasised issues dear to me: how we can learn from each other and identify to experiences people have, find empathy.

We have a little talk with Marianne about terminology and use the term immigration generation. I find out I’ve got it all wrong. I thought there are two ways to describe immigrant generations. I chose the one where immigrant is the term for the one who immigrated and their children would be the first generation immigrant and so on. Marianne tells me that academic way for the term is that actual immigrant is the first generation immigrant and then their children would be second generation immigrant. The theory is developed by historian Marcus Lee Hansen. Marianne tells me the terminology is all built around the issue of the “encounter with the new culture”.

We leave with Carole towards Stillwater and I interview Joan there in her and her husbands Chuck’s beautiful house. I’m getting more and more interested in the religious aspect of the immigrants. As Joan, many of my interviewees have been somewhat religious. I ask Joan about this and she thinks there is no no difference anymore today. In the past, there was a division in between leftists and people with religion as I’ve read myself, too. But if traces of that division still exist, I haven’t been able to record them.

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