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Opening the Gates to AsiaA Transpacific History of How America Repealed Asian Exclusion$
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Jane H. Hong

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9781469653365

Published to North Carolina Scholarship Online: September 2020

DOI: 10.5149/northcarolina/9781469653365.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM UNIVERSITY OF NORTH CAROLINA PRESS SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.northcarolina.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of North Carolina Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in NCSO for personal use.date: 16 September 2021

Laying the Groundwork for a Movement

Laying the Groundwork for a Movement

The World War II Campaign to Repeal Chinese Exclusion

(p.21) Chapter One Laying the Groundwork for a Movement
Opening the Gates to Asia

Jane H. Hong

University of North Carolina Press

This chapter analyzes the Chinese exclusion repeal campaigns as a negotiation between a community-based effort driven by the needs of Chinese Americans and an elite white American campaign rooted in Washington’s wartime imperatives. In what became a pattern in later campaigns, a group called the Citizens Committee interrupted and ultimately superseded Chinese Americans’ attempts to restore non-quota admission for the alien wives of Chinese American citizens. Charting this context makes clear how the Magnuson Act, far from a product of wartime geopolitics alone, more accurately represented the convergence of transnational and national, diplomatic and community-based pressures. It frames the 1943 Magnuson Act repealing Chinese exclusion as culminating years of lobbying to liberalize U.S. immigration policy toward Chinese on the one hand, and as planting the seeds of a longer repeal movement on the other.

Keywords:   Magnuson Act, Citizens Committee, World War II, China, Sino-American

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