Pub. date: 2008 | Online Pub. Date: April 25, 2008 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412963879 | Print ISBN: 9781412926942 | Online ISBN: 9781412963879 | Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Chinese Exclusion Act
Eric Yang Liu
The 1882 Chinese Exclusion Act was the first discriminatory immigration law in U.S. history to bar immigration of people of a particular national origin. Politicizing widespread racist anti-Chinese sentiment and agitation, the act had significant impact on the daily life of Chinese immigrants as well as those from other nations in the world who were denied entry to the United States and access to citizenship and employment opportunities. After its initial passage by Congress in 1882, the act was periodically amended, renewed, and eventually made U.S. law. Indeed, restrictions imposed on the rights of Chinese immigrants at each of these stages became tighter and tighter. Although the Chinese Exclusion Law was eventually repealed by the Magnuson Act in 1943, given that China was an important ally of the United States in Asia during World War II, anti-Chinese discrimination to a large extent remained in the Magnuson Act, which prohibited a ...