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A Dream-Proof Wall

A Dream-Proof Wall

At least once in their life, everyone heard about the “American dream”, the dream of a chance for a freer and better life. But what if this dream wasn’t for everybody?

What if the “land of freedom” was not the “land of equality”?

In this episode, Cristina Bruno and Shabbana Shama will try to dig further into what concept is behind the idea of building the infamous wall between the United States and Mexico wanted by the ex-President Donald Trump and how the history of this border between the two States reveals how difficult it is to define what an American is. Reminiscing the USA’s past as a country built on immigration, this question – what does it mean to be an American? – will be the lead for a conversation with Professor Elvira Pulitano, Professor of the Ethnics Studies Department at the California Polytechnic State University. Thanks to her contribution, the listener will reflect on important topics, often cited but never truly investigated.

After a summary on the legal framework related to acquiring US citizenship and entering the country legally, the two hosts will expand on the condition of the recipients of the DACA program – the so-called Dreamers -, the aim of the program itself and how building a life in the USA is not enough to legally be American yet. To this purpose, Cristina and Shabbana will be able to better understand the discourse thanks to the firsthand testimony of Anali, a Dreamer and activist for the association Define American.

In an hour and a half long journey, through research and conversation, Cristina and Shabbana hope to help the listeners discover matters they only heard about and possibly sparking a self-reflection and raise awareness.

This podcast available in English is produced by Cristina Bruno and Shabbana Shama as part of the university course “Politics of Migration and Human Rights” conducted by Professor Clelia Bartoli at the University of Palermo.

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