Closed Borders

The Contemporary Assault on Freedom of Movement

Alan Dowty

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"Alan Dowty has put all of us in his debt. He has fully and authoritatively revealed just where, how, and why the freedom of movement of tortured human beings is obscured or forbidden throughout the world. His book could not be more timely. It is an achievement of the first importance."—Theodore Draper







"A scholarly, historical and contemporary survey of the way in which governments trample the decisions of individual people about where they want to live. It is an eloquent plea for respecting these decisions."—David Matas, Toronto Globe and Mail

"The discussion of refugee, expatriation and immigration problems, and the broader political difficulties that generate them, will be greatly helped by [this] conscientious, balanced and readable assemblage of the known facts."—Rogers M. Smith, Times Literary Supplement

"Closed Borders forces us to wonder why scholars have long neglected the comparative treatment of large movements of peoples."—Adam Garfinkle, Orbis

"The book may be utopian in its hope that the world's governments will ever yield on a matter deemed a question of sovereignty, but in its consistent devotion to principle it may well hold a key to practical betterment of the situation."—Lucy Edwards Despard, Foreign Affairs

"Dowty has a deep and passionate concern for the freedom of movement of the individual, particularly freedom to move from one's own country to another. . . . A fascinating historical review."—R. Mansell Prothero, Third World Quarterly

"Stimulating and thought provoking."—Thomas D. Hall, Social Science Quarterly

"A powerful, beautifully written book that makes a sobering case against the force of progress in history."—Choice

"What seems clear is that freedom of movement will become firmly established in the pantheon of precious human rights only when we are able to reconcile the receiving states' genuine national interests. Unfortunately, as this valuable book grimly documents, we seem to be moving away from, rather than toward, that noble goal."—Peter H. Schuck, American Journal of International Law

"The basic point of Closed Borders is unassailable: human rights considerations should weigh heavily in a nation's assessments of its own political self-interests. The right of personal self-determination is enshrined and its promotion makes good sense as well as a matter of policy."—Arthur C. Helton, Connecticut Journal of International Law

"A gracefully written and well-researched work."—Ethics

"A well-documented, well-written, scholarly book. A welcome addition to human-rights literature."—Norman L. Zucker, Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science

"A powerful, beautifully written book. . . . The most comprehensive work in its field; highly recommended for all collections."—Choice

"A well-documented polemic on the virtues of relatively unrestricted immigration and emigration policy. . . . The most thorough and eloquent discussion of the issue yet available. It will be an important reference for anyone interested in immigration policy, international law, or human rights."—Steven W. Hays, Perspective
ISBN: 9780300044980
Publication Date: September 10, 1989
Publishing Partner: A Twentieth Century Fund Report
270 pages, 5 1/2 x 8 1/4