Heather R. Lee
Areas of Expertise & Civic Involvements
Lee researches transnational flows of people and capital between North America and Asia during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. She is especially interested in the interaction between migrants and immigration law enforcement, and how migrants develop sophisticated systems that defy legal regulations. Her work shows the Chinese historically opened restaurants because these businesses allowed them and their relatives to bypass restrictive immigration laws. She is involved with public education at museums and historical societies and has worked with immigrant rights organizations on the DREAMact and the 1882 Project.
Lee has done interviews with the China Daily and is currently helping a journalist at The Atlantic on a piece she is writing about Chinese restaurant workers.