Middleman minority

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A middleman minority is a minority population whose main occupations link producers and consumers: traders, money-lenders, etc. A middleman minority, while possibly suffering discrimination, does not hold an "extreme subordinate" status in society.[1] The "middleman minority" concept was developed by sociologists Hubert Blalock and Edna Bonacich starting in the 1960s but is also used by political scientists and economists.[citation needed]


There are numerous examples of such groups gaining eventual prosperity in their adopted country despite discrimination. Often, they will take on roles between producer and consumer, such as trading and moneylending. Famous examples such as Jews throughout Europe even at times when discrimination against them was high, Chinese throughout Southeast Asia, Muslims and Parsis in India, Igbos in Nigeria, Indians in East Africa, Lebanese in West Africa, and many others.[2]

Middleman minorities usually provide an economic benefit to communities and nations and often start new industries. However, their economic aptitude, financial success and clannishness, combined with social prejudices by other groups against businesses and moneylending, can cause resentment among the native population of a country. Middleman minorities can be victims of violence, genocide, racialist policy, or other forms of repression. Other ethnic groups often accuse them of plotting conspiracies against their nation or of stealing wealth from the native population.[2]


See also[edit]


  1. ^ O'Brien, David J.; Stephen S. Fugita (April 1982). "Middleman Minority Concept: Its Explanatory Value in the Case of the Japanese in California Agriculture". The Pacific Sociological Review. University of California Press. 25 (2): 185–204. doi:10.2307/1388723. JSTOR 1388723. S2CID 158296209.
  2. ^ a b Sowell, Thomas (2005). "Is Anti-Semitism Generic?". Hoover Digest. Hoover Press. 2005 (3).
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l Bonacich, Edna (October 1973). "A Theory of Middleman Minorities". American Sociological Review. American Sociological Association. 38 (5): 583–594. doi:10.2307/2094409. JSTOR 2094409.
  4. ^ a b Thomas Sowell, Black Rednecks & White Liberals; about the book: Black Rednecks and White Liberals
  5. ^ Suny, Ronald Grigor. "Eastern Armenians Under Tsarist Rule" in The Armenian People From Ancient to Modern Times, Volume II: Foreign Dominion to Statehood: The Fifteenth Century to the Twentieth Century, ed. Richard G. Hovannisian, New York: St. Martin's Press, 1997, p. 125.
  6. ^ Blow; p. 213.
  7. ^ a b c d Swietochowski, Tadeusz (1985). Russian Azerbaijan, 1905-1920: The Shaping of a National Identity in a Muslim Community. Cambridge University Press. ISBN 9780521522458.
  8. ^ Braux, Adeline (3 December 2013). "Azerbaijani Migrants in Russia" (PDF). Caucasus Analytical Digest. 57 (5): 5–7.
  9. ^ "The Chinese in America: A Narrative History"
  10. ^ "Japanese Americans: The Development of a Middleman Minority"
  11. ^ "The Middleman Minority Characteristics Of Korean Immigrants In The United States"
  12. ^ Essays on Twentieth-Century History p.44
  13. ^ Boxberger, Linda (2002). On the edge of empire: Hadhramawt, emigration, and the Indian Ocean, 1880s-1930s. SUNY Press. ISBN 9780791452172. ISSN 2472-954X. OCLC 53226033.
  14. ^ Freitag, Ulrike (1999). "Hadhramaut: A Religious Centre for the Indian Ocean in the Late 19th and Early 20th Centuries?". Studia Islamica (89): 165–183. doi:10.2307/1596090. JSTOR 1596090.
  15. ^ Manger, Leif (2010). The Hadrami diaspora: Community-building on the Indian Ocean rim. Berghahn Books. ISBN 9781845459789. OCLC 732958389.
  16. ^ [1]
  17. ^ Jeffrey Lesser, "(Re) Creating Ethnicity: Middle Eastern Immigration to Brazil", The Americas Vol. 53, No. 1 (Jul., 1996), pp. 45-65 JSTOR 1007473

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