Entity | Oscar Handlin

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Oscar Handlin (1915–2011) was an American historian. As a professor of history at Harvard University for over 50 years, he directed 80 PhD dissertations and helped promote social and ethnic history, virtually inventing the field of immigration history in the 1950s. Handlin won the 1952 Pulitzer Prize for History for The Uprooted (1951). Handlin's 1965 testimony before Congress was said to "have played an important role" in passage of the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965 that abolished the discriminatory immigration quota system in the US. Handlin was born in Brooklyn, New York City, on September 29, 1915, the eldest of three children of Russian-Jewish immigrants. His mother, the former Ida Yanowitz, came to the United States in 1904 and worked in the garment industry. His father, Joseph, immigrated in 1913 after attending a commercial college in Ukraine and being stationed in Harbin, China, as a soldier during the Russo-Japanese War. Handlin's parents were passionately devoted to literature and the life of the mind. Their experience of religious persecution in Czarist Russia made them fiercely devoted to democracy and social justice (Handlin was a proto-"red diaper baby"). The couple owned a grocery store, the success of which along with real estate investments enabled them to send their children, Oscar, Nathan, and Sarah, to Harvard.
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Born: 1915, Brooklyn
Died: 2011, Cambridge

Alternate Names: Handlin, Oscar, 1915-2011, Handlin, Oscar, 1915-, Handlin, Oscar., Handlin, O., Chandlin, Oscar, 1915-, Jandlin, Oskar, Khandlin, Oskar 1915-, Khandlin, Oskar, 1915-2011, Handlin Oskar 1915-...., Khandlin, Oskar.
Occupation(s): historian
Employer(s): Brooklyn College, Harvard University
Associated Place(s): United States