The way the Chinese dressed, and styled their hair made the Americans perceive them of not having proper gender roles. America had a big problem with the Chinese because they were cheaper labor, so factory owners would hire Chinese over the native-born Americans. Even though the immigrants were deemed as physically unsuitable for labor jobs, they still got hired. Also later on in the future Americans blamed the Chinese for a major depression that occurre... ... middle of paper ... ... of the country or was turned into a slave. The relationship between America and China became very strained during this time.
The large numbers of immigrants that came during the nineteenth century angered many of the American natives and lead to them to blame the lack of jobs and low wages on the immigrants, especially the Asian communities. This resentment lead to the discrimination and legal exclusion of immigrants, with the first and most important law passed being the Chinese Exclusion Act. However, the discrimination the Chinese immigrants so harshly received was not rightly justified or deserved. With all of their contributions and accomplishments in opening up the West, they were not so much harming our country but rather helping it. The Chinese immigrants started flooding in through the West coast to California around the time of the Gold Rush, looking for economic opportunity.
This was not only applied to the Chinese but to the Japanese as well. After the attack on Pearl Harbor, the Yellow Peril heightened only more and many more people became racist the Chinese and Japanese. After the 1853 recession, many Californians were looking for cheap labor to capitalize on profits. Chinese immigrants came to America for a assortment of reasons, including work in the Pearl River delta region, and the company of sensibly fast trade routes to the United States, and the attraction of gold. As a result of their lower demand for wages, and their inclination to form self-supporting communities without support, Chinese immigrants became the best option of labor for many people.
Most of them worked on the railroads because "the Gold Rush had fueled the demand for rail lines to link the east and west coasts of North America." When America hit economic decline, many Americans lost their jobs because their employer could not afford to handle as many people with less money. This made the Americans compete for jobs that the Chinese had. Of course the employer of the Chinese would be American, so he would hire Americans instead of Chinese. Eventually, Congress passed an act called the Chinese Exclusion Act, which said that no more Chinese could come to the United States.
At first they were welcomed as guests and treated with politeness by the local. However, as the political current changed, the whites oppressed them. The could not attain citizenship because they were not “white.” The California legislature passed the Foreign Miner’s tax, which charged three dollars per month for each miner. The Chinese could only live in certain neighborhood; even then, to prevent Chinese crowding together, the California legislature passed the Cubic Air Ordinance law, stating that each person require a certain amount of space. After the mines were dried out, the Chinese began working on the Continental Railroad.
The Opium War not only embarrassed China, but as a consequence, it also had a lot of dramatic social and economic effects as well. China’s view of the Western world along with the relationship changed drastically. Due to the war, there were a lot of internal battles and struggles as well as economic downfall especially in Canton where a lot of trading was focused on prior to the war. This left a lot of people in China without jobs, which resulted in China completely losing all power and control that it had to the Western nations. This allowed these nations to gain power over them, which was not foreseen prior to the war.
Over time, Chinese workers faced poverty and significant anti-Chinese sentiment, which severely limited their participation after the passing of the Chinese Exclusion Act in 1882. Despite facing these challenges, however, the Chinese labor force intensified the multicultural nature of Western society and distinctly helped to shape the American West as we know it today.
The Chinese Exclusion Act was enacted to curb the influx of Chinese immigrants seeking work in the failing post-Civil War economies. The Chinese settlers created enclaves in many West-Coast cities; the most famous of these being the “China-Town” in San Francisco. Anti-Chinese sentiment grew from the Nativist policies of Denis Kearney, his Workingman’s Party, and California statesman John Bigler. White power organizations fought against Chinese immigrants as well, specifically the Supreme Order of Caucasians in April 1876 and the Asiatic Exclusion League in May 1905. They stated that Chinese laborers had driven wages down to an unacceptable level, Resultantly, they fought against the rights of Chinese Immigrants, many of whom had been natur... ... middle of paper ... ... Chinese Exclusion Act, 1882.
Fear of economic competition and a degraded standard of living wa... ... middle of paper ... ...al ideology of the times. The passage of the White Australia Policy in 1901 was the product of fifty years of building tensions. From the early contacts with the Chinese indentured laborers in the pastures, to the violent outbursts witnessed in the goldfields, and to the antipathy industrialized Chinese faced in the cities, there is no question that the economic impact of the Chinese immigrants led to calls for restrictive legislation. However, the racialism that erupted immediately as further justification exhibits the fact that economic concerns may not have been strong enough to cause general public outrage across factions of society. The two fed off of each other, but in the end this paper argues that without the backdrop of racial ideology so inherent in public opinion of this time, the White Australia Policy may not have garnered such unanimous support.
Having escaped their misfortunate pasts, the Chinese immigrants took the opportunities afforded to them in the gold mining fields and on the railroad tracks. Providing a much needed labor force to America at the time, the Chinese would never get their just credit. Instead they would be discriminated more in the years to come. Acts such as the Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882 would greatly reduce the number of Chinese immigrants allowed to come into the country ("The Chinese," n.d.). Coupled with measures put in place by the state of California such as the “Anti-Coolie Act of 1862”, the Chinese immigrants faced humiliation after contributing so much to the United States of America.