Expelling Newcomes

Cecilia Muñoz

in The Fractious Nation?

Published by University of California Press

Published in print June 2003 | ISBN: 9780520220430
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520936911 | DOI:
Expelling Newcomes

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  • Social Stratification, Inequality, and Mobility


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This chapter documents a source of fragmentation at least as crucial as immigrants' refusal to embrace American culture: restrictions on classical American notions of citizenship, due process and rights that characterized congressional immigration initiatives in the late 1990s. It notes that to an extent barely recognized in public debate, a series of recent laws and policies has radically challenged the old immigration regime. It observes that American society has been quietly refiguring the boundaries of national community and sacred notions of citizenship. It further observes that the erosion of constitutional community began with the California governor's race in 1994, spilled over into national legislation with provisions of the welfare and immigration bills of 1996, found expression in a 1998 proposal in Congress to revoke the concept of birthright citizenship, and continues with the increased use of racial and ethnic profiling in the enforcement of immigration and other laws.

Keywords: fragmentation; American culture; due process; rights; congressional immigration initiatives; constitutional community; California governor's race; welfare and immigration bills; birthright citizenship; ethnic profiling

Chapter.  4785 words. 

Subjects: Social Stratification, Inequality, and Mobility

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