Skip to content

Your Cart


You have 0 items in your cart.

Register Sign in Wishlist

Strangers and Neighbors
Multiculturalism, Conflict, and Community in America

$29.99 (P)

Award Winner
  • Date Published: October 2013
  • availability: In stock
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9781107676800

$ 29.99 (P)

Add to cart Add to wishlist

Other available formats:
Hardback, eBook

Looking for an examination copy?

If you are interested in the title for your course we can consider offering an examination copy. To register your interest please contact providing details of the course you are teaching.

Product filter button
About the Authors
  • The city of Lewiston, Maine, has struggled since its mills began closing in the 1950s. Historically recognized for its large French-speaking population descended from the Canadians who staffed the city's mills, in the new millennium Lewiston acquired a new identity as “Maine's Mogadishu.” Beginning in 2001, substantial Somali immigrant settlement gave Lewiston the largest per capita Somali population in the United States and sparked controversies and collaborations that redefined the city. In Strangers and Neighbors, Andrea M. Voyer shares five years of observations in the city of Lewiston. She shows how long-time city residents and immigrant newcomers worked to develop an understanding of the inclusive and caring community in which they could all take part. Yet the sense of community developed in Lewiston was built on the appreciation of diversity in the abstract rather than by fostering close and caring relationships across the boundaries of class, race, culture, and religion. Through her sensitive depictions of the experiences of Somalis, Lewiston city leadership, anti-racism activists, and even racists, Voyer reveals both the promise of and the obstacles to achieving community in the face of diversity.

    • Accessibly written with the general reader in mind
    • Contains unique data
    • Presents a new perspective on the topics of immigration and community
    • Considers the topic of immigrant incorporation from a variety of perspectives and at a variety of levels of analysis
    Read more


    • Honourable Mention, 2014 Best Book Award, Migration and Citizenship Section, American Political Science Association

    Reviews & endorsements

    "In this riveting new work, Voyer uses a theoretically critical (and inherently fascinating) case to build new insights into the evolving nature of multiculturalism, citizenship, and the relation between global and local in the emerging ethno-political order of the United States. A truly great contribution not only to our understanding of ethnicity, but of culture as well."
    John Levi Martin, University of Chicago

    "An extraordinary book that documents, interprets, and explains an extraordinary yet somehow typically American situation. Black Islamic Somalis come to Maine, and Maine first rejects and then incorporates them! Or does it? Bringing creative theorizing together with thick ethnography, Voyer’s cultural sociology of contemporary immigrant incorporation is a major achievement."
    Jeffrey C. Alexander, Yale University

    "The empirical object of Strangers and Neighbors is the 'diversity trouble' that arose in a small New England town when an influx of Somali immigrants substantially altered its cultural and racial fabric. But its underlying theoretical object is the larger picture of challenges facing all Americans in an age of growing ethnic diversity. This thoughtful and beautifully written work will speak powerfully to race scholars, students of immigration, cultural sociologists, and specialists in urban studies. But its penetrating insights into the complexities and ambiguities of multiculturalism also will contribute importantly to our broader public debate regarding what incorporation means and how best to achieve it."
    Mustafa Emirbayer, University of Wisconsin, Madison

    "The freshness of Voyer’s research; the imaginative ways she adjusts to the (inevitable) problems we all encounter in fieldwork; her commitment of time, energy, and mind to following the project to its theory-inspired end - as well as the graceful presentation of the work - are very impressive. This is an excellent ethnography-based study. It embodies very extensive original work and careful analysis. Voyer’s theoretical reflexivity is refreshing and not too common in our subject area. Although it is a case study, her theoretical and practical conclusions provide insights with wider relevance."
    Martin O. Heisler, University of Maryland

    "I am impressed by Voyer’s thick, nuanced, and sensitive analysis of Somali belonging - something I can easily relate to, as I observe many similar issues and challenges faced by my own and other ‘new’ immigrant communities. Her interpretation from the lens of the cultural pragmatics of incorporation of familiar strangers is simply brilliant. I also appreciate very much the effective and elegant writing, among other merits."
    Pei-te Lien, University of California, Santa Barbara

    "Voyer’s book is a magnificent accomplishment. I was bewitched by her prose and her compelling, thick description of careful, impressive, and dedicated fieldwork. It is the book I would most likely recommend to lay readers and undergraduates."
    Daniel J. Tichenor, University of Oregon

    See more reviews

    Customer reviews

    Not yet reviewed

    Be the first to review

    Review was not posted due to profanity


    , create a review

    (If you're not , sign out)

    Please enter the right captcha value
    Please enter a star rating.
    Your review must be a minimum of 12 words.

    How do you rate this item?


    Product details

    • Date Published: October 2013
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9781107676800
    • length: 228 pages
    • dimensions: 228 x 153 x 12 mm
    • weight: 0.31kg
    • contains: 1 b/w illus. 2 maps 4 tables
    • availability: In stock
  • Table of Contents

    Introduction: strangers in a strange land
    1. Ellis Island South and Maine's Mogadishu
    2. The meaning of Somali settlement and the boundaries of belonging
    3. Being the inclusive community
    4. Disciplined to diversity
    5. Familiar strangers
    Conclusion: cultural scaffolding.

  • Author

    Andrea M. Voyer, Pace University


    • Honourable Mention, 2014 Best Book Award, Migration and Citizenship Section, American Political Science Association

Sign In

Please sign in to access your account


Not already registered? Create an account now. ×

Sorry, this resource is locked

Please register or sign in to request access. If you are having problems accessing these resources please email

Register Sign in
Please note that this file is password protected. You will be asked to input your password on the next screen.

» Proceed

You are now leaving the Cambridge University Press website. Your eBook purchase and download will be completed by our partner Please see the permission section of the catalogue page for details of the print & copy limits on our eBooks.

Continue ×

Continue ×

Continue ×

Find content that relates to you

This site uses cookies to improve your experience. Read more Close

Are you sure you want to delete your account?

This cannot be undone.


Thank you for your feedback which will help us improve our service.

If you requested a response, we will make sure to get back to you shortly.

Please fill in the required fields in your feedback submission.