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Expatriation. Exile. Immigration. Repatriation. These words seem so similar but have such different places in society. Whatever the reason for leaving one’s homeland, the way one lives in that place determines where he will fit into society. It is in this searching for a niche that clichés often form and groups of people become stereotyped. From once small groups, a larger more defined population has grown in which all are intertwined creating what one may call diversity or the beginning of chaos.
Although expatriation, exile, immigration, and repatriation all deal with the basis of leaving one’s homeland, the decisions each individual makes when embarking on his new life divides these four words into separate diverse categories. The act of expatriation abundantly differs from the act of repatriation. In expatriation the individual leaves his country in the hope of leaving all previous customs and traditions aside and taking on the new society’s entire lifestyle. Whatever the reason may be for this change, the individual functions completely free from his previous homeland.
A person in exile may leave for a variety of reasons ranging from the banishment from one’s country to the sudden escaping from the same country. At times often pursuing glamorous lifestyles unattainable in his own country, the whereabouts of this individual may often be kept hushed. Although the person in exile may be welcomed by his new country, he may be carrying along suffering from his native land.
Immigration is soon becoming a thing of the past. At a time when herds of civilized people often from one culture came in flocks to new homelands, small little communities formed keeping the strict customs of that foreign culture while establishing a new life. With areas known as Little Italy and the North End, these people grew together and began to adapt to the new culture. Stemming from these communities, an abundance of culture driven places are arising.
Repatriation is the reclaiming of previously owned land. The culture taking control of the land, is in actuality regaining their land. At one point in history that society occupied the land such as part of present day California was once Mexico.
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Although these are all methods of leaving one’s homeland, the way each individual approaches the subject matter is completely different. With the example of two sisters, one choosing to adapt to the new culture whereas the other continued her homeland’s customs and only adapted to a new atmosphere, each person must decided what is right for himself. Although all coming from different places, we are all united in one area.