This chapter focuses on the notion of “family reunification”—an underlying principle of U.S. immigration policy—to understand state actions and how the state penetrates family life. For example, state control can influence decisions of whether to migrate or not, family residence patterns, and migrations that separate or reunite family members. Indeed, it is through state–migrant interactions that family is reconstituted in a transnational place, and exclusion itself stems from the state's prerogative to “regulate membership according to family ties.” Family reunification can include state-sanctioned and state-regulated family reunification, as well as the multiple ways that migrants construct and reunite family outside of state controls.
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