Article ID: CBB113946369

Documenting Difference: Standardizing Foreign Physicians (2023)


Alam, Eram (Author)

American Quarterly
Volume: 75
Issue: 1
Pages: 129-151
Publication date: 2023
Language: English

This essay traces the transformation and standardization of the first cohort of Asian physicians trained outside the United States into Foreign Medical Graduates (FMGs) within the United States through documentary regimes. Congress solicited foreign physicians under the Hart-Celler Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965 to address doctor shortages in inner-city and rural communities throughout the country—a trend that continues today. Central to their migratory journey was an archive of expertise, a compilation of documents intended to verify identity, skill, and competence. Through the analysis of a physician's case file, new relations to documentation emerge that reveal how claims of underdocumentation, incorrect documentation, and overdocumentation regulate immigrant possibilities. In adopting this approach, this case study moves away from the unskilled / model minority dichotomy to show how documentary proceduralism operates as a racializing, disciplinary strategy across categories of immigrant labor.

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Authors & Contributors
Alam, Eram
Anderson, R. Joseph
Cordukes, Mary Colleen
Ferng, Jennifer Hsiao-Mei
Greene, Mott T.
Hagendijk, Rob
Business History Review
Historical Studies in the Natural Sciences
Science, Technology, and Human Values
Bulletin of the History of Medicine
Health and History
Isis: International Review Devoted to the History of Science and Its Cultural Influences
Cambridge University Press
Alfred A. Knopf
Johns Hopkins University Press
MIT Press
Voltaire Foundation
Emigration; immigration
Standards and standardization
Physicians; doctors
Cross-cultural interaction; cultural influence
Libraries and archives
Time Periods
20th century, late
21st century
19th century
20th century
20th century, early
United States
Great Britain
Rome (Italy)
National Health Service (Great Britain)
University of Miami
Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development

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