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May 1 @ 12:00 pm - 1:30 pm CDT

Speaker Series: Hiroshi Motomura

Law, University of California, Los Angeles School of Law
"Borders and Belonging"
Hybrid: Virtual/In-Person (ABF Offices, 750 N Lake Shore Drive, 4th Floor Chicago, IL)

Hiroshi Motomura will share key lessons from his forthcoming book, Borders and Belonging. The book shows how new immigration policy insights emerge from combining approaches that are seldom adopted together. This broader inquiry reveals conceptual obstacles to finding sound responses to migration. First is a tendency to apply a simplistic single framework for evaluating migrants’ claims. In fact, some claims invoke shared humanity, while other claims draw on belonging to a national community. Second is a false assumption that immigration laws govern the boundary between insiders and outsiders. In fact, immigration laws empower some insiders while silencing others. Third is a deceptive distinction between “refugees” and “migrants.” In fact, refugees work, and many migrants flee dire conditions. Fourth is a misleading choice between “temporary” and “permanent” migration. In fact, the line between them is blurred. Moving beyond these (and other) conceptual obstacles is essential for developing sound responses to human migration.

To register, contact Sophie Kofman at skofman@abfn.org


Hiroshi Motomura is the Susan Westerberg Prager Distinguished Professor of Law and the Faculty Co-Director of the Center for Immigration Law and Policy at the University of California, Los Angeles School of Law. Motomura is a teacher and scholar of immigration and citizenship, with influence across a range of academic disciplines and in federal, state, and local policymaking.

His book, Americans in Waiting: The Lost Story of Immigration and Citizenship in the United States (Oxford 2006) won the Professional and Scholarly Publishing (PROSE) Award from the Association of American Publishers as the year’s best book in Law and Legal Studies, and was chosen by the U.S. Department of State for its Suggested Reading List for Foreign Service Officers. He is a co-author of two immigration-related casebooks: Immigration and Citizenship: Process and Policy (9th ed. West 2021) and Forced Migration: Law and Policy (2d ed. West 2013), and he has published many widely cited articles on immigration and citizenship. His most recent book, Immigration Outside the Law (Oxford 2014), won the Association of American Publishers’ Law and Legal Studies 2015 PROSE Award and was chosen by the Association of College and Research Libraries as a Choice Outstanding Academic Title.

In 1997, Professor Motomura was named President’s Teaching Scholar, which is the highest teaching distinction at the University of Colorado, and he has won several other teaching awards, including the 2008 Distinguished Teaching Award for Post-Baccalaureate Instruction at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, and the 2013 Chris Kando Iijima Teacher and Mentor Award from the Conference of Asian Pacific American Law Faculty (CAPALF). He was one of just 26 law professors nationwide profiled in What the Best Law Teachers Do (Harvard 2013), and he received the UCLA Distinguished Teaching Award in 2014 and the law school’s Rutter Award for Teaching Excellence in 2021. He teaches Immigration Law, Immigrants’ Rights, and the Immigrants’ Rights Policy Clinic, and he is the Faculty Co-Director of the Center for Immigration Law and Policy (CILP) at the UCLA School of Law.

Professor Motomura was a Guggenheim Fellow in 2018 to work on a book, Borders and Belonging: Can Immigration Policy Be Ethical?, now under contract with Oxford University Press (forthcoming 2024). A preliminary partial version of the project was published as “The New Migration Law” in the 2020 Cornell Law Review.