Get At America's Gates: Chinese Immigration during the Exclusion PDF

By Erika Lee

ISBN-10: 0807854484

ISBN-13: 9780807854488

With the chinese language Exclusion Act of 1882, chinese language employees turned the 1st staff in American heritage to be excluded from the U.S. at the foundation in their race and sophistication. This landmark legislations replaced the process U.S. immigration historical past, yet we all know little approximately its results for the chinese language in the US or for the USA as a state of immigrants.

At America's Gates is the 1st booklet dedicated fullyyt to either chinese language immigrants and the yank immigration officers who sought to maintain them out. Erika Lee explores how chinese language exclusion legislation not just reworked chinese language American lives, immigration styles, identities, and households but additionally recast the us right into a ''gatekeeping nation.'' Immigrant identity, border enforcement, surveillance, and deportation rules have been prolonged a long way past any controls that had existed within the usa prior to.

Drawing on a wealthy trove of old sources--including lately published immigration files, oral histories, interviews, and letters--Lee brings alive the forgotten trips, secrets and techniques, hardships, and triumphs of chinese language immigrants. Her well timed e-book exposes the legacy of chinese language exclusion in present American immigration keep an eye on and race kin.

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Additional resources for At America's Gates: Chinese Immigration during the Exclusion Era, 1882-1943

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Rich as they are, these records—like all sources—are problematic in some ways. First, the documents were created in the language of immigration law and within the context of government regulation. They also privilege the perspective and prerogative of immigration officials. The level of detail, the questions asked, the manner of questioning, and the presentation of testimony were all determined by the government officials recording and processing the information. References in officials’ diaries and personal correspondence hint at an immense anti-Chinese bias that informed the nature and scope of their work.

65 Denis Kearney, leader of the anti-Chinese Workingmen’s Party, was an Irish immigrant. James D. Phelan, leader of the anti-Japanese movement, was Irish American. By leading racist campaigns against Asian immigration, Kearney and Phelan reaffirmed their own status as whites. In the multiracial West, such consolidations of whiteness were central to sustaining the existing racial hierarchy. The best expression of this sentiment occurred during the  Chinese Exclusion Convention, an event organized to lobby for the permanent exclusion of Chinese immigrants.

Exclusionists claimed that Chinese men exploited women (by supporting the Chinese trade in prostitution) and immigrated alone, failing to establish families. 18 Chinese men also did not abide by the rules that divided labor by gender in American society. 19 Their physical appearance and choice of clothing also disturbed American perceptions of proper gender roles. Prior to the Chinese Revolution in , Chinese men shaved their foreheads and wore their hair in a queue as a symbol of loyalty to the Qing Empire.

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At America's Gates: Chinese Immigration during the Exclusion Era, 1882-1943 by Erika Lee


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