Lecture Description

In the last decade there has been considerable political debate over the “birth right citizenship” clause of the Fourteenth Amendment and its application to children of undocumented immigrants. This lecture shows that, in fact, the Framers of the Fourteenth Amendment were fully aware that there were “illegal immigrants” in the U.S. in 1868 and there had been such persons since the early 1800s. The lecture argues that this history – often forgotten – demonstrates that those who wrote the Fourteenth Amendment assumed anyone born in the United States (except the children of diplomats) would be citizens at birth, no matter what the status of their parents.


Constitutional and Legal Immigration

ALL TOPICS & TITLES: Go back to all topics and titles.

More Distinguished Lectureship Program Resources