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In 1882, Congress passed the Chinese Exclusion Act, which was the first major legislative act in American history to restrict immigration. In this episode we talk with historian Andrew Gyory about the reasons that immigration became such a powerful political issue in the late 19th century, and how studying this period of history can help us better understand the politics of immigration in 2017. Dr. Gyory is an expert on the history of immigration and the author of Closing the Gate: Race, Class, and the Chinese Exclusion Act, (UNC Press, 1999).
Andrew Gyory, “Don’t Think Trump Will Ever Pass a Muslin Ban? Just Ask Sen. James G. Blaine,” Washington Post, December 8, 2105.
Bob Crawford, “Base Lessons: Rallying Supporters at Immigrants’ Expense Has a Long History in the United States, The Road to Now Blog, August 3, 2017.