Historical Patterns in the American Immigration Debate
MetadataShow full item record
Heather Fryer uses her gifts as an historian to reveal some surprising patterns in the immigration story in the U.S. Understanding our history can help us understand the forces within us all which tend to resist “aliens” in our land.Dr. Heather Fryer, is the Director of the American Studies Program and Associate Professor in the History Department at Creighton.Dr. Fryer's Lecture will focus on how the national debate surrounding comprehensive immigration reform that has been at the forefront of current events is part of a more heated rhetoric, which dates to the arrival of the first non-English immigrants during the colonial era.This survey of immigration debates from the 18th-20th centuries shows how the tension between Americans’ pride in the “great melting pot” and anxiety about “foreign invasion” have derailed progress toward just, sensible immigration reform for over two hundred years.Drawing the distinction between embedded cultural patterns and salient current issues offers a new possibility for more productive dialogue in the 21st century.