Collective (Mis)Representation of U.S. Immigration Laws

Authors

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.33182/ml.v18i5.1269

Keywords:

Citizenship, exclusion, immigrant, representation, restriction

Abstract

This paper examines historic federal immigration policies that demonstrate how the United States has rendered entire groups of people living inside and outside of its territory as outsiders. Collective representations like the Statue of Liberty suggest that the U.S. is a nation that welcomes all immigrants, when in reality, the U.S. has historically functioned as a “gatekeeper” that excludes specific groups of people at different times. The concurrent existence of disparate beliefs within a society’s collective consciousness influences the public’s views toward citizenship and results in policy outcomes that contrast sharply from the ideal values that many collective representations signify. As restrictive immigration controls are refined, insight into how immigrant exclusion via federal policy has evolved is necessary to minimize future legislative consequences that have the potential to ostracize current and future Americans.

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Published

2021-09-30

How to Cite

Pedron, S. (2021). Collective (Mis)Representation of U.S. Immigration Laws. Migration Letters, 18(5), 519–532. https://doi.org/10.33182/ml.v18i5.1269

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Section

Articles