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Heather Fryer

Heather Fryer
Department of History Profile

Dr. Heather Fryer, is the Director of the American Studies Program and Associate Professor in the History Department at Creighton.

Dr. Fryer's Lecture will focus on how the national debate surrounding comprehensive immigration reform that has been at the forefront of current events is part of a more heated rhetoric, which dates to the arrival of the first non-English immigrants during the colonial era.

This survey of immigration debates from the 18th-20th centuries shows how the tension between Americans’ pride in the “great melting pot” and anxiety about “foreign invasion” have derailed progress toward just, sensible immigration reform for over two hundred years.

Drawing the distinction between embedded cultural patterns and salient current issues offers a new possibility for more productive dialogue in the 21st century.


Historical Patterns in the
American Immigration Debate

A video of Dr. Fryer's
Presentation on
November 12th, 2013
at Creighton University

Melting Pot

Historical Patterns in the
American Immigration Debate

Dr. Fryer uses her gifts as an historian to reveal some surprising patterns in the immigration story in the U.S.  Understanding our history can help us understand the forces within us all which tend to resist “aliens” in our land.

As the U.S. Bishops and so many other religious communities are speaking up to urge us to revive the discussion and reform our approach to immigration, come and be inspired by Dr. Fryer’s revealing presentation.  Through political cartoons, current newspaper stories and speeches throughout our history, we will learn that there are common elements which have led us to the broken immigration policy we now have.

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