Susan researches social, political, and legal activism surrounding immigration issues, particularly immigration from El Salvador to the United States. Her new book, Exiled Home:  Salvadoran Transnational Youth in the Aftermath of Violence is forthcoming in May 2016, and it explores the power and limitations of nation-based categories of membership through the experiences of 1.5 generation migrants, that is, individuals who were born in El Salvador but raised in the United States.  With Sameer Ashar, Jennifer Chacón, and Stephen Lee, she was recently awarded National Science Foundation funding to study the forms of Executive Relief announced by President Obama in November 2014.  This study aims to address three sets of questions:  (1) How do prospective applicants and recipients of deferred action experience the uncertainty, first of litigation-induced delays in implementation of the program, and second, of possessing a form of temporary and contingent status in the United States? (2) How are civil society organizations and third parties working in immigrant communities to interpret legal developments and facilitate applications for deferred action?  (3)  How have these unconventional legal benefits changed the meaning and terms of membership?  Answering these questions will shed light on how the proliferation of types of legal status potentially alters our collective understanding of membership in the American polity.


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