What is Citizenship? A Conversation with Mae Ngai on The Takeaway

Historians in the News
tags: racism, citizenship, immigration



This weekend, a far-right rally was held in Washington, D.C. in support of the January 6th insurrectionists and the legal consequences that some involved in the Capitol riots are facing.

While many Republican leaders are attempting to distance themselves from the event, it’s a reminder that for a portion of people in this country, the notion of who is truly American is directly tied up with white supremacy.

The white grievances aired on January 6th and in the election of Donald Trump can be traced much further back to the founding of the United States and who was originally allowed to be a citizen.

But it’s not just the right that places these limits around citizenship. Under former President Obama and President Biden, restrictive immigration policies have spotlighted the lack of humanity in how our government treats people from beyond our borders.

The Takeaway speaks with historian Mae Ngai about how notions of U.S. citizenship have changed over time.

Read entire article at WNYC

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