Migration is usually defined as “permanent or semipermanent change o f residence”.
“ This broad definition, of course, would include a move across the street or a cross a city. Our concern is with movement between nations, not with internal mi gration within nations, although such movements often exceed international movem ents in volume. Today, the motives of people who move short distances are very s imilar to those of international migrants”.
Students of human migration speak of “push” and “pull” factors, which influe nce an individual’s decision to move from one place to another. Push factors are associated with the place of origin. A push factor can be as simple and mild a matter as difficulty in finding a suitable job, or as traumatic as war, or sever e famine. Obviously, refugees who leave their homes with guns pointed at their heads are motivated almost entirely by push factors (although pull factors do in fluence their choice of destination).
Pull factors are those associated with the place of destination. Most of thes e are economic, such as better job opportunities or the availability of good lan d to farm. The latter was an important factor in attracting settlers to the Unit ed States during the 19th century. In general, pull factors add up to an apparen tly better chance for a good life and material wellbeing than is offered by th e place of origin. When there is a choice between several attractive potential d estinations, the deciding factor might be a noneconomic consideration such as the presence of relatives, friends, or at least fellow countrymen already establ ished in the new place who are willing to help the newcomers settle in. Consider ations of this sort lead to the development of migration flow.
Besides push and pull factors, there are what the sociologists call “intervenin g obstacles”. Even if push and/or pull factors are very strong they still may b e outweighed by intervening obstacles, such as the distance of the move, the tro uble and cost of moving, the difficulty of entering the new country, and the pro blems likely to be encountered on arrival.
The decision to move is also influenced by “personal factors” of the potential migrant. The same pushpull factors and obstacles operate differently on diffe rent people, sometimes because they are at different stages of their lives, or j ust because of their varying abilities and personalities. The prospect of packin g up everything and moving to a new and perhaps very strange environment may app ear interesting and challenging to an unmarried young man and appallingly diffic ult to a slightly older man with a wife and small kids. Similarly, the need to l earn a new language and customs may excite one person and frighten another.
Regardless of why people move, migration of large numbers of people causes confl ict. The United States and other western countries have experienced adjustment p roblems with each new wave of immigrants. The newest arrivals are usually given the lowestpaid jobs and are resented by native people who may have to compete with them for those jobs. It has usually taken several decades for each group to be accepted into the mainstream of society in the host country.
1. The author thinks that pull factors ______.
A. are all related to economic considerations
B. are not as decisive as push factors
C. include a range of considerations
D. are more important than push factors
2. People’s decisions to migrate might be influenced by all the following EXCEPT ______.
A. personalitiesB. education
C. marital statusD. abilities
3. The purpose of the passage is to discuss ______.
A. the problems of international migrants
B. the motives of international migrants
C. migration inside the country
D. migration between countries