Cultural logics of belonging and movement Transnationalism, naturalization, and U.S. immigration politics



In the United States, unprecedented high numbers of naturalization applicants, the adoption of restrictive immigration policies, changing demographics, and the 1996 presidential election coalesced in the mid-1990s to make naturalization simultaneously a high priority and problematic. Salvadorans who had immigrated during the 1980s and who were still struggling for the opportunity to naturalize were caught up in these dynamics. A juxtaposition of their struggles against exclusion and of naturalization ceremonies' rhetoric of inclusion elucidates complex and paradoxical connections between naturalization and transnationalism.