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Befriending the “Yellow Peril”: Chinese Students and Intellectuals and the Liberalization of U.S. Immigration Laws, 1950–1965

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The extensive literature concerning America's exclusion of Asians has emphasized primarily the domestic contexts for restricting trans-Pacific migrations. Fears of a “Yellow Peril” invasion and conquest were used to justify the earliest American attempts to limit the entry of races and nationalities deemed too different and incompatible to integrate and participate on equal terms in a republic dominated by European arrivals and their descendants. Asian American Studies scholars in particular have mined the rich vein of documents delineating the formative legacy of anti-Asian laws, ideologies, and institutions shaping the still deeply troubled patrolling of American borders today. Less attention has turned to the influence of foreign policy considerations and their role in carving out categories of migrants exempted from exclusionary laws. For example, the Chinese Exclusion Law of 1882 made exceptions for merchants, merchant family members, students and teachers, diplomats, and tourists.

10.1163/187656109793645634
/content/journals/10.1163/187656109793645634
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/content/journals/10.1163/187656109793645634
2009-01-01
2016-09-30

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