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* Korean

The first Korean immigrants came to Hawaii and then the United States early in the twentieth century. The overwhelming majority of today's Korean Americans, however, are post-Korean War immigrants or their descendants, with the bulk of immigration occurring since 1970. Interestingly, women comprise significantly more than half this population.

Most of the Korean immigrants opted to leave their country due to greater economic opportunities in the U.S. (particularly in the immediate post-war period) and in response to repeated cycles of internal strife. More than 40% of Korean Americans live in the West, most notably in Los Angeles' thriving Koreatown. Large Korean communities can also be found in New York, Philadelphia, and many other urban centers.

Web Sites

In Helpful Web Sites, you can find links to useful resources about Korea.


  • New Urban Immigrants: the Korean Community in New York, by Kim Illsoo
  • The Korean Diaspora: Historical and Sociological Studies of Korean Immigration and Assimilation in North America, compiled by Hyung-chan Kim
  • Contemporary American Immigrants: Patterns of Filipino, Korean, and Chinese settlement in the United States, by Luciano Mangiafico

For some tips on researching abroad, see the topic All about international resources.

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