Refugees in the United States: Background information when reading The Book of Jonas

Summary |  Excerpt |  Reading Guide |  Reviews |  Beyond the Book |  Readalikes |  Genres & Themes |  Author Bio

The Book of Jonas

by Stephen Dau

The Book of Jonas by Stephen Dau X
The Book of Jonas by Stephen Dau
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

  • First Published:
    Mar 2012, 272 pages
    Paperback:
    Feb 2013, 272 pages

  • Rate this book


Book Reviewed by:
Beverly Melven

Buy This Book

About this Book

Beyond the Book:
Refugees in the United States

Print Review

The 1951 Refugee Convention which established the UNHCR, the United Nations Refugee Agency, defines a refugee as someone who "owing to a well-founded fear of being persecuted for reasons of race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group or political opinion, is outside the country of his nationality, and is unable to, or owing to such fear, is unwilling to avail himself of the protection of that country." While Jonas in The Book of Jonas, does not fit this definition exactly, he was indeed seeking refuge in the United States from the fighting that killed his family, and he could not safely stay in his home country. Once in the United States, Jonas makes friends with other refugees - a sub-culture of people running from horrors elsewhere - in his high school and later in college.

Thousands of refugees settle in the U.S. every year The Displaced Persons Act of 1948 was enacted in the U.S. to help victims of Nazi persecution. The act allowed more than 250,000 displaced Europeans to settle in the U.S. after World War II. The Refugee Act of 1980 standardized treatment of refugees from all countries, necessary after decades of temporary provisions for various immigrations from Communist Europe and Asia in the 1950s, Cuba in the 1960s, and Southeast Asia after the Vietnam War. Annual admission rates have ranged from a high of 207,000 in 1980, to a low of 27,100 in 2002. In 2011, more than 56,000 refugees arrived in the U.S. from all over the world.

In the United States, three government agencies are involved in processing refugees - Homeland Security, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, and the U.S. Department of State. Usually working with the United Nations, several nongovernmental organizations and thousands of volunteers, these three agencies screen applicants before they come and provide for their care once they get here.

Article by Beverly Melven

This article was originally published in September 2012, and has been updated for the February 2013 paperback release. Click here to go to this issue.

This article is available to non-members for a limited time. You can also read these articles for free. For full access, become a member today.
Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Support BookBrowse

Become a Member and discover books that entertain, engage & enlighten!

Join Today!

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket: The Wife Between Us
    The Wife Between Us
    by Sarah Pekkanen, Greer Hendricks
    The Wife Between Us is an intriguing collaboration between first-time novelist Greer Hendricks and ...
  • Book Jacket: The Wife Between Us
    The Wife Between Us
    by Sarah Pekkanen, Greer Hendricks
    The Wife Between Us is an intriguing collaboration between first-time novelist Greer Hendricks and ...
  • Book Jacket: Only Child
    Only Child
    by Rhiannon Navin
    Rhiannon Navin's debut novel, Only Child received an overall score of 4.8 out of 5 from BookBrowse ...
  • Book Jacket: Brass
    Brass
    by Xhenet Aliu
    In 1996, Waterbury, Connecticut is a town of abandoned brass mills. Eighteen-year-old Elsie ...

Book Discussion
Book Jacket
The Women in the Castle by Jessica Shattuck

A nuanced portrait of war, and of three women haunted by the past and the secrets they hold.

About the book
Join the discussion!

First Impressions

  • Book Jacket

    Only Child
    by Rhiannon Navin

    A dazzling, tenderhearted debut about healing, family, and the exquisite wisdom of children.
    Reader Reviews

  • Book Jacket

    The French Girl
    by Lexie Elliott

    An exhilarating debut psychological suspense novel for fans of Fiona Barton and Ruth Ware.
    Reader Reviews

Win this book!
Win Beartown

Now in Paperback!

From the author of a A Man Called Ove, a dazzling, profound novel about a small town with a big dream.

Enter

Word Play

Solve this clue:

T I M A Slip B C A L

and be entered to win..

Books that     
entertain,
     engage

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends books that we believe to be best in class. Books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, that will expand your mind and challenge you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.