Front cover image for A nation of immigrants reconsidered : US society in an age of restriction, 1924-1965

A nation of immigrants reconsidered : US society in an age of restriction, 1924-1965

"This anthology brings together leading scholars of migration, ethnicity, race, and labor in a broadly comparative reconsideration of how immigration policy became a site for reconfiguring international relations, realigning labor priorities, and reimagining the attributes of citizenship. The decades following the passage of the 1924 Immigration Act are usually viewed as a lull in the long history of immigration to the United States. Through a discriminatory system of national origins quotas, the immigration laws of the 1920s greatly reduced or barred altogether immigration from Asia, southern and eastern Europe, and other parts of the world in order to maintain the dominance of western and northern European stock. Four decades later, the 1965 Immigration and Nationality Act (also known as the Hart-Celler Act) was credited with reopening America's gates, enabling much greater diversity in immigration, and "inadvertently" transforming the demographic composition of the United States. The essays in this anthology show that the 1965 Immigration and Nationality Act was not a dramatic departure from the status quo but rather emerged from the political struggles of the preceding four decades. Changing conceptions of race relations, citizenship, and America's role in the world, as well as new demands for specialized labor, produced a number of policy shifts that made the 1965 Immigration Act possible. The debates and struggles of the 1924-1965 period critically reshaped American society for decades to come in ways that reverberate to this day"-- Provided by publisher
Print Book, English, 2019
University of Illinois Press, Urbana, 2019