Meaning of Citizenship in the US Empire

Meaning of Citizenship in the US Empire - Sam Erman I...

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.. Page 1 of 25 VoL 27, Na 4 Journals Search Panama Information Summer 2008 Previous Table of contents Next Table of cosiest, a Search Builder list journal Issues Home Git Pfister-friend* format Meanings of Citizenship in the U.S. Empire: Puerto Rico, Isabel Gonzalez, and the Supreme Court, 1898 to 1905 SAM ERMAN ISABEL GONZALEZ'S trajectory from detained "alien" to Supreme 1 Court litigant illuminates links between the legal history of U.S. empire and the legal history of race and immigration in the United States. Her case, Gonzales v. Williams (1904), was the first in which the Court confronted the citizenship status of inhabitants of territories acquired by the United States during its deliberate turn toward imperialism in the late nineteenth century. As with many cases, a combination of Gonzalez's actions and circumstances gave rise to the challenge. A single, pregnant mother, Gonzalez headed to New York from Puerto Rico in the summer of 1902. Subject to inspection at Ellis Island as an alien, she failed to gain entry to the mainland under an immigration policy that advocates of racial exclusion had shaped in line with their concerns about the sexual morals and family structures of immigrants. Gonzalez responded by drawing on familial social networks to challenge immigration authorities in federal court. She claimed that she was not an alien but a U.S. citizen. The Court would ultimately give her a narrow victory, holding that Puerto Ricans were not aliens but refraining from deciding whether they were U.S. citizens. While the dispute raged, however, lawyers and litigants gave it wider compass, comparing Puerto Ricans to women, children, domestic U.S. minorities, and colonized peoples. These comparisons reveal how Gonzalez's claim to membership in the U.S. empire-state implicated, and thus threatened to unsettle, doctrinal balances involving gender, race, and immigration. I Steaming away from Puerto Rico aboard the S.S. Philadelphia in the 2 summer of 1902, Gonzalez departed a homeland both within and beyond the U.S. nation. Puerto Rico was within the United States because on July 25, 1898, the United States invaded the island and then annexed it through the Treaty of Paris, congressionally confirmed on April 11, 1899, that brought an end to the war between the United States and Spain in Cuba, Puerto Rico, and the Philippines. That treaty recognized U.S. authority over these islands and Guam. Puerto Rico lay beyond the United States because a combination of congressional and judicial action had denied the island full-fledged entry into the U.S. federal system. Prior to 1898 the United States had organized new acquisitions from nontribal governments Cite this electronic article Access rid. In POF
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Meaning of Citizenship in the US Empire - Sam Erman I...

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