Obituary: Aristide Zolberg, leading Scholar in Immigration is no more

Published Date:   Saturday, Apr 13, 2013


Aristide  Zolberg,  a distinguished political scientist and a preeminent scholar of comparative politics, the history of international migration, nationalism and ethnicity, and immigration policy in North America and Western Europe passed away on 12 April 2013 in New York City. His life was a testimony of struggle against all odds including experiencing war, ethnic hatred, and exile during second warld war. Being a Polish Jew, Zolberg experienced the torture in the hand of Nazis and subsequently became a refugee in the United States.

Zolberg ‘s next phase began in academics. He earned a doctorate degree  from the University of Chicago and emerged as one of the leading scholar in the area of immigration. His own experience as an immigrant contributed his first hand experience to the understanding of the immigrants.

Zolberg was not only a leading scholar but also an institution builder. He was first appointed as Distinguished Professor of Political Science in 1983 in the New School. He served as the founding director of the International Center for Migration, Ethnicity and Citizenship at The New School for several years. He also served as Walter A. Eberstadt Professor of Politics and University in Exile Professor Emeritus at The New School for Social Research. Zolberg is an inspiring teacher. He mentored and inspired students and colleagues alike.

 Zolberg is a prolific researcher. He published large array of books and research papers. His book publications include “A Nation by Design, remains one of the most authoritative accounts of immigration history in the United States and a compelling story of how immigration shaped this country. His humanity and erudition will be missed by countless colleagues, students, and readers. How Many Exceptionalisms? Explorations in Comparative Macroanalysis (Temple University Press, 2008), A Nation by Design (Russell Sage Foundation Books at Harvard University Press, 2006), Shadows over Europe (Palgrave, 2002), co-edited with Martin Schain and Patrick Hossay, Global Migrants, Global Refugees (Berghahn, 2001), co-edited with Peter Benda. Besides this, he also published articles regularly in leading International journals. Details of his works available at :

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