Chinese in California: 1850-1925
the United States exclude the Chinese from immigrating?
The main focus of our
exploration this week is The Chinese
in California: 1850-1925 archive in the Library of Congress American
Memory collection. You’ll be examining a wide-ranging series of texts
and images about the Chinese in America (mainly in the late nineteenth
century) that were part of the on-going debate that eventually resulted
in the 1882 Chinese Exclusion Act and sustained it for decades.
The issues that were
swirling around America in the late nineteenth century about immigration,
and specifically Chinese immigration, were incredibly complex. While
it is impossible in a one-week unit to examine in great detail the many
pro- and anti-Chinese ideas circulating, we can at least begin to discover,
explore, analyze, and interpret how the Chinese people in America were represented
in magazines, plays, poems, advertisements, speeches, and photographs during
this period. We can at least begin to unravel some of the strands
in the web of ideas and causes of the first major legislation that set immigration
policy in America for decades.
So, your assignment this week is
- to explore the
causes of the Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882
- to record your exploration
in a web log (a "blog")
The Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882 was the first significant
restricted immigration into the United States
ethnic working group.