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Immigration - Felton 1 Leea Felton Immigration and the...

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Felton, 1 Leea Felton Immigration and the American Dream Paper 1. Due Oct. 22, 2010 Gangs of New York The “melting pot” that is America, has been a long debated, and highly controversial topic all throughout American history. The theory is that immigrants from all over the world, bring their language, culture, religions, and ethics to America with them, and once here in the “New World” blend those entities together; thus creating a “new” America one filled with different people and ideas. The question of the melting pot is whether it was, or ever will be possible to “blend” together different people, and whether or not Americans want to be blended. The movie Gangs of New York does a particularly good job at showing the melting pot theory as well as the reactions of the “native American” people already living in the city. The movie takes place around 1863 when a young man (Amsterdam Vallon) returns to the crime filled streets of Five Points New York to avenge his father’s death. Instead of immediately wreaking havoc on the city and its infamous crime leader Bill the “Butcher” Amsterdam gets taken in by Bill where he learns the “rules of the city.” Unlike the Five Points Amsterdam and his father were once used to, this new city was filled with religious turmoil, corruption, and separation. The more Amsterdam learns about the city he has returned to, the more the viewers get to see early America and its rejection of the melting pot.
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Felton, 2 The Irish are a main group depicted in this movie, primarily because the main character and his father were Irish Catholics. In the first fifteen minutes of the movie it is shown that Amsterdam’s father “the Priest” gathers up fellow Irish men and women, and fight for their stay in Five Points against Bill the Butcher. The fight begins with a few words from the Butcher
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