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Immigration Law and Social Justice, Second Edition

  • Bill Ong Hing
  • Jennifer M. Chacon
  • Kevin R. Johnson
Series / Aspen Casebook Series
Teaching Materials
Table of contents

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This innovative casebook approaches immigration law and policy from a public interest perspective with a special emphasis on issues of social justice. Along with cases and statutory material, Immigration Law and Social Justice employs a variety of materials from appellate cases, client examples, article excerpts, and hypotheticals. These materials not only provide the basic framework for immigration law, but also engage students with the greater social, political, and economic context necessary to understand the movement of immigrants to the United States, as well as the human impact of immigration law enforcement and administration. Through examples, notes and questions that raise the social, racial, and political questions of admission and enforcement, as well as discussion of public interest lawyers’ strategies, this casebook advances students’ understanding of the creative approaches used in the field. Ultimately, this book encourages students to think broadly about relevant social, economic, and political forces.

New to the Second Edition:

  • Supreme Court decisions on expedited removal and DACA
  • Analysis of the Trump administration approaches to relief from removal, judicial review, and the rights of noncitizens
  • Major Supreme Court decisions, including Trump v. Hawaii (Muslim ban) and Dimaya v. Sessions (2018) (aggravated felonies)
  • Administrative decisions such as Matter of A-C-M- (material support bar), Matter of A-B- (domestic violence and particular social group)
  • Developments in how immigration courts define convictions
  • Additional/updated material on:
    • History of U.S. immigration laws
    • Race-conscious lawyering; racial justice and immigrant rights
    • New ICE enforcement guidance under the Biden administration; U.S. v. California (upholding California’s sanctuary policies)
    • Citizenship for orphans; renunciation of citizenship
    • Public charge grounds and Title 42 COVID exclusions; I-601A waiver; firearms offenses; crimes involving moral turpitude
    • Restrictions on bond hearings imposed by the Trump administration; monitoring of children’s detention centers under Flores settlement; Zepeda Rivas v. Jennings (requirements on ICE detention facilities in light of COVID-19)
    • Border wall and related litigation; Operation Streamline; worksite enforcement; state and local cooperation
    • Pereira v. Sessions and Niz-Chavez v. Garland (defective Notice to Appear and eligibility for cancellation of removal); cancellation of removal
    • Examination of right to counsel for minors and for non-detained respondents with mental challenges; ineffective assistance of counsel; restrictions imposed by Trump administration on immigration court continuances; problems with distance videoconference hearings
    • New refugee numbers under the Biden administration; past persecution; membership in particular social groups

Professors and student will benefit from:

  • Deep background on the social context of immigration law and its enforcement in the context of a sophisticated examination of the technicalities of relevant statutory and administrative law
  • Materials encouraging students to learn relevant law with an eye toward potential advocacy, including litigation strategies, and which challenge students to evaluate critically the mutually constitutive work of race and immigration law
  • Contextual background to understand immigration and immigration enforcement
  • Unique focus on immigration and social justice, as well as public interest immigration lawyering
  • Focus on issues of contemporary relevance, highlighting some of the most contentious areas of immigration law and policy
  • Materials designed to facilitate student understanding of the letter of immigration law, and to encourage students to think creatively about possible reform
  • Integrated critical materials exploring the role of race, class, religion, gender, and disability in immigration law and policy
  • Problems designed to encourage active learning and application of law


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About the authors
Kevin R. Johnson
University of California, Davis, School of Law

Kevin R. Johnson joined the UC Davis law faculty in 1989 and was named Associate Dean for Academic Affairs in 1998. Johnson became Dean in 2008. He has taught a wide array of classes, including immigration law, civil procedure, complex litigation, Latinos and Latinas and the law, and Critical Race Theory. In 1993, he was the recipient of the law school's Distinguished Teaching Award. Dean Johnson has published extensively on immigration law and civil rights. Published in 1999, his book emHow Did You Get to Be Mexican? A WhiteBrown Man's Search for Identityem was nominated for the 2000 Robert F. Kennedy Book Award. Dean Johnson’s latest book,em Immigration Law and the US-Mexico Borderem (2011), received the Latino Literacy Now’s International Latino Book Awards – Best Reference Book. Dean Johnson blogs at ImmigrationProf, and is a regular contributor on immigration on SCOTUSblog. A regular participant in national and international conferences, Dean Johnson has also held leadership positions in the Association of American Law Schools and is the recipient of an array of honors and awards. He is quoted regularly by the emNew York Timesem,em Los Angeles Timesem, and other national and international news outlets. A magna cum laude graduate of Harvard Law School, where he served as an editor of the emHarvard Law Reviewem, Dean Johnson earned an A.B. in economics from UC Berkeley, graduating Phi Beta Kappa. After law school, he clerked for the Honorable Stephen Reinhardt of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit and worked as an attorney at the international law firm of Heller Ehrman White & McAuliffe. Dean Johnson has served on the board of directors of Legal Services of Northern California since 1996 and currently is President of the board. From 2006-11, he served on the board of directors of the Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund, the leading Mexican-American civil rights organization in the United States. Dean Johnson is the recipient of many awards and honors, including the Association of American Law Schools Minority Groups Section Clyde Ferguson Award (2004), the Hispanic National Bar Association Law Professor of the Year award (2006), the National Association of Chicana and Chicano Studies Scholar of the Year award (2008), the Central American Resource Center (CARECEN) Romero Vive Award (2012), and the Centro Legal de la Raza Outstanding Achievements in the Law Award (2015). In 2003, he was elected to the American Law Institute.

Product Information
Second Edition
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Copyright Year
Connected eBook + Hardcover
Connected eBook (Digital Only)
Immigration Law
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