Event—Scholarly Seminars

Eladio Bobadilla, University of Kentucky, and Ivón Padilla-Rodríguez, Columbia University


"'A Loaded Gun Pointed at Our Heads': Immigration and the Chicano Mobilization Against the Carter Curtain," Eladio Bobadilla

Almost immediately after being introduced in 1977, Jimmy Carter’s immigration plan faced opposition from Mexican Americans. The article asks why this was so, arguing that by analyzing their opposition, we can better understand Chicano shifts in attitudes toward immigrants. Unlike previous generations of Mexican Americans—who had long been ambivalent about immigration—Chicanos in the 1970s had come to view anti-immigrant legislation as opening the door to legalized racism and discrimination and possibly to a new bracero program, which they felt would threaten not only their intra-ethnic solidarity gains but their labor organizing advances as well.

“Migrant Education or Migrant Expulsion? Public Schools as Sites of Surveillance, Immigration Enforcement and Deterrence, 1965-1982," Ivón Padilla-Rodríguez

The 1965 Migrant Education Program (MEP) was bundled into the War on Poverty’s Elementary and Secondary Education Act with the stated purpose of enhancing migrant children’s educational access. But the MEP’s deficiencies and its introduction of a unique data collection technology ended up producing novel forms of precarity that jeopardized the privacy of migrant youth and their undocumented parents, making them vulnerable to the criminal justice system and federal immigration enforcement. This paper examines the attempted educational deprivation of noncitizen students and refashioning of schools as sites of surveillance and immigration enforcement, which resulted in landmark late-twentieth century court decisions.

Respondent: Sarah Coleman, Texas State University