The 100th Anniversary of the Chinese Exclusion Act: A Time to Reclaim Our History

by Gordon H. Chang

Nothing more symbolizes the racist treatment of Chinese in the U.S. than the 1882 Chinese Exclusion Act. One hundred years ago, Congress enacted legislation that added Chinese workers to prostitutes and imbeciles as undesirable elements prohibited from entering the U. S.

It was the first exclusionary immigration act based solely on nationality. Its affect on the Chinese of America was profound as it was on all Asians when the Act was expanded in subsequent years.