Race, Citizenship, and the U.S. Constitution

Lecture Description

This presentation discusses the construction of race in the law by looking at trials of racial identity in which courts sought to determine who was Black, white, or Indian. It shows that these legal cases tied citizenship to whiteness, and that connection carried through from the antebellum era through the 20th century in cases regarding Mexican Americans, Asian Americans, and other immigrants to the United States. The promise of the Reconstruction Amendments, still not fulfilled, is to break that connection between citizenship and whiteness.


Constitutional and Legal Race

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