Temporary Protection, Enduring Contradiction: The Contested and Contradictory Meanings of Temporary Immigration Status
Law & Social Inquiry
In the construction of immigration status categories in law and social practice, the power of the nation-state to define migrants’ status is pervasive but far from absolute. In this article, I examine the conditioned legality known as Temporary Protected Status (TPS) in US immigration law through a discussion of legal structures, historical frames, local discourses, and Salvadoran migrants’ lived experiences with liminal legality in rural Arkansas in the first decade of the twenty-first century. I argue that migration policy, though fraught with ambiguity and contradiction (see Coutin 2007; Coutin and Yngvesson 2008), functions both to reproduce and to mask the benefits to the nation-state from the ambiguous inclusion and simultaneous exclusion of migrant workers. In spite of the efficacious ways immigration policies discipline and constrain, within these limits migrants, legal practitioners, and others respond as critical agents to the policy structures shaping their lives.
American Bar Foundation
Hallett, Miranda Cady, "Temporary Protection, Enduring Contradiction: The Contested and Contradictory Meanings of Temporary Immigration Status" (2014). Sociology, Anthropology, and Social Work Faculty Publications. 82.