Update June 2013: Please see the follow-ups on Anthropologists Studying Immigration in the United States and Immigration Reform: Institute for Women’s Policy Research.
There are signs of hope that the U.S. Senate is putting together a Better Immigration Bill. At the same time, the whole issue has become intertwined with that never-ending battle about the relation between race and IQ (thank you to Beatriz Reyes-Foster for the tweet alert).
The scenes take us back to Franz Boas and the foundations of academic anthropology in the United States. Immigration was supposed to be one of the key public issues for the American Anthropological Association in 2013, but I’m not seeing any updates since the General Statement on Immigration of 2011. The AAA General Statement is important, as it discusses anthropology’s history and obligations, but it was written in opposition to state-level laws and does not comment on current national legislation.
I have also not seen much in the anthropology blogosphere (let me know if I’m missing something!). Michael Scroggins is pursuing a related track with The Political Economy of IQ at Ethnography.com, and Debra Lattanzi has been tracking immigration reform with pieces like Five Myths about the Immigration Line at Living Ethnography, but it would be nice to see more anthropology on the issues of immigration, nation, ethnicity, race, and IQ.
So this is a CFBP, a call for blog posts. I can put your work up as a guest post, promote it, or suggest another outlet in the anthropology blogosphere.
Here are some additional possible resources:
- Josiah McC. Heyman has an extended history working on these issues, including Finding a Moral Heart for U.S. Immigration Policy published by the American Anthropological Association.
- I previously discussed the AAA General Statement on Immigration and Heyman’s work in a September 2011 post Anthropology on Immigration.
- I teach Ruth Gomberg-Muñoz Labor and Legality for my Introduction to Anthropology course (and was delighted when she stopped by to comment!).
- See also Race IQ – Game Over: It was always all about wealth. Ron Unz’s article draws on reports of a rapid rise in Mexican-American IQ in a quite short timespan (and of course Unz has been denounced by the usual Race-IQ suspects). Clarence Gravlee’s work on How Race Becomes Biology is also relevant here, and see Human Skulls for more on the Boas head-shape studies.