The Rhetorics of US Immigration: Identity, Community, Otherness

E. Johanna Hartelius

In the current geopolitical climate—in which unaccompanied children cross the border in record numbers, and debates on the topic swing violently from pole to pole—the subject of immigration demands innovative inquiry. In The Rhetorics of US Immigration: Identity, Community, Otherness, some of the most prominent and prolific scholars in immigration studies come together to discuss the many facets of immigration rhetoric in America. The Rhetorics of US Immigration provides readers with an integrated sense of the rhetorical multiplicity circulating among and about immigrants. Whereas extant literature on immigration rhetoric tends to focus exclusively on the media, The Rhetorics of US Immigration extends the conversation to, among others, the immigrants themselves. A collection whose own eclecticism highlights the complexity of the issue, The Rhetorics of US Immigration is not only a study in the language of immigration, but a frank discussion of who is doing the talking and what it means for the future. From questions of activism, authority, and citizenship, to the influence of Hollywood, the LGBTQ community, and the church, The Rhetorics of US Immigration considers the myriad venues in which the American immigration question emerges, and the interpretive framework suited to account for it.

Penn State University Press, 2015


“A scholarly work that is as fresh and relevant as today’s headlines, The Rhetorics of US Immigration helps us understand the depths, implications, and nuances of the immigration debate. It will be valuable for scholars and policy makers alike.”

—Barry Brummett, University of Texas at Austin

“In its careful analysis of the rhetoric surrounding immigration, The Rhetorics of US Immigration astutely links historical and current rhetorical strategies to shed light on the complexity of an increasingly polarized public debate. More importantly, through this work Hartelius gives readers pertinent examples for practical application to engage more effectively in rhetorically shaping how immigration is discussed and ultimately addressed politically.”

—Jacob Perry, Cisnero Center for New Americans