Friday, April 11, 2014

Call for Papers: 50th Anniversary of the Hart-Celler Act

Call for Papers

The 1965 Immigration Act:

50 Years of Race-Neutral (?) Immigration

 The 1965 Immigration Act, also known as the Hart-Celler Act, was a landmark piece of legislation, removing racial barriers that had been a part of federal immigration law since 1790 when the first Congress passed, and George Washington signed, a law restricting citizenship by naturalization to “free white persons.”  

The 1965 Immigration Act is arguably the most successful federal civil rights law since Reconstruction.  Before 1965, the immigrant stream was overwhelmingly white, and predominantly from the countries of Northern and Western Europe.  Since 1965, a supermajority of immigrants have been people of color from Asia and Central and South America.  The states of California, Hawaii, New Mexico, and Texas and the District of Columbia are now majority minority, and the United States is expected to become a majority minority nation as a whole by 2043.  At the same time, the 1965 Immigration Act was a product of its era.  It may have ended formal racial discrimination but it did not eliminate race as a critical and problematic concern in the administration of immigration law.  Moreover, it also perpetuated discrimination based on sexual orientation and political opinion.  It failed to account for the interests of Mexican migrant workers who had travelled to the United States for generations but were restricted under the new law.  It also had the effect of giving Africans few opportunities to come to the United States.

On the occasion of its 50th anniversary, the Immigration and Minority Law sections invite papers to explore the 1965 Immigration Act’s origins; its legal, political, economic, and cultural effects; and its future, including proposals for alternative systems.  Two to three papers will be selected from the Call for Papers to be presented at the 2015 AALS Annual Meeting, which will be held in Washington, DC.  There is no commitment to publish but both Sections will seek publication opportunities with law reviews.  

Eligibility: Full-time faculty members of AALS member law schools are eligible to submit papers. Pursuant to AALS rules, faculty at fee-paid law schools, foreign faculty, adjunct and visiting faculty (without a full-time position at an AALS member law school), graduate students, fellows, and non-law school faculty are not eligible to submit. Please note that all faculty members presenting at the program are responsible for paying their own Annual Meeting registration fee and travel expenses.

Submission: Papers (rather than abstracts) should be submitted to the program committee no later than August 15, 2014, and the papers to be presented will be selected based on an anonymous review by the section’s program committee by September 15. Please send submissions to In order to facilitate anonymous review, please identify yourself and your institutional affiliation only in the cover letter or email accompanying your manuscript, and not in the manuscript itself. 

Inquiries: Questions regarding the program may be directed to Huyen Pham at, or Rose Cuison Villazor at

| Permalink


Post a comment