The Invention of Immigration as a Policy Problem

Lecture Description

This lecture examines the formative period in the history of immigration policy, the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. This talk uses the story of the largest study of immigrants in American history, the U.S. Immigration Commission of 1907 to 1911, to trace the rise of modern immigration policy, social science, and exclusion laws. It focuses on a formidable group of men and women, including anthropologist Franz Boas, Senator Henry Cabot Lodge, and Mary Philbrook, the first female attorney in New Jersey–as well as the immigrants they studied. It argues that this period in time and the work of these researches set the frame for today’s immigration policies.

CATEGORIES

Immigration Politics

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Katherine Benton-Cohen

VIEW SPEAKER : Katherine Benton-Cohen


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