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date: 16 July 2019

Abstract and Keywords

The longstanding popular belief that immigration iscriminogenic for communities in the United States is deeply rooted in an arguably xenophobic political discourse. This empirically unsupported claim has informed many immigration policies throughout the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. The politics of immigration and crime has created a stereotype of the criminal immigrant. This notion of immigrant criminality has shaped immigration laws since the Civil Rights Era; the politics of border patrol policy, welfare retrenchment, mass incarceration, immigrant detention, and deportation; and the blurring of civil and criminal immigration statutes. State-level initiatives that criminalize unauthorized immigrants and their families have been designed within a political discourse that synonymizes “immigrant” and “criminal.”

Keywords: immigration and crime, politics of crime policy, deportation, detention and incarceration

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