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Conditional Citizens Download Ú 106 ð The acclaimed award winning novelist author of The Moor's Account and The Other Americans now gives us a bracingly personal work of nonfiction that is concerned with the experiences of conditional citizens What does it mean to be American In this starkly illuminating and impassioned book Pulitzer Prize FinalThe acclaimed award winning novelist author of The Moor's Account and The Other Americans now gives us a bracingly personal work of nonfiction that is concerned with the experiences of conditional citizens What does it mean to be American In this starkly illuminating and impassioned book Pulitzer Prize Finalist Laila Lalami recounts her unlikely journey from Moroccan immigrant to US citizen using it as a starting point for her. US citizenship is a birthright for some and a pillar of the American Dream for others Those who are born with it may take it for granted but plenty of immigrants dream of the day they will become official citizens They jump through hoops to fulfill reuirements and pass a test—all with the end goal of the naturalization ceremony that one moment they can stand in front of their fellow country men and women and say “now I’m one of you” But as Laila Lalami discovered when she emigrated from Morocco even fulfilling all the reuirements of citizenship can’t guarantee the same rights and protections for everyone in this countryNew this September from Pantheon “Conditional Citizens On Belonging in America” by Pulitzer Prize finalist Laila Lalami offers the literary world an intimate look into what it’s like to become an American and indeed what it means to be an American at all This book neatly straddles the line between memoir and essay mounting a topic that has always been poignant but is even relevant to the wider political and humanitarian conversation in the US in 2020 For readers searching for pertinent non fiction this is a must readAt the time of the founding of the US the full rights of citizenship were only afforded to white male landowners Over the years amendments laws and the slow evolution of culture have extended and of the privileges of citizenships to women people of color and those too poor to own land but these little half steps forward have failed to present euality for all even today Lalami a muslim woman who was raised in a comparatively poor family has never fit the image of a citizen that the founding fathers had in mind Upon arriving in the US as a student she didn’t even know which box to check for race when asked if she was black or white in the demographic portion of a standardized testShe discusses issues of race class religion sexuality and gender citing specific ways in which each can act as a barrier to keep specific groups of people for achieving the American Dream She exposes systems of oppression in ways that can be eye opening to those who have been lucky enough to avoid them in their own lives She skillfully weaves tales of personal struggles with events that have made national or even international headlines over the last few decades Perhaps the most remarkable part of this book is that it manages to expose so many systems of suppression and maltreatment without losing hope Not every American was invited to take place in the conversations that built these systems but as Lalami demonstrates by writing this book maybe we can all have a hand in reshaping the country we want to live in

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H the result that a caste system is maintained keeping the modern euivalent of white male landowners at the top of the social hierarchy Conditional citizens she argues are all the people whom America embraces with one arm and pushes away with the other Brilliantly argued and deeply personal Conditional Citizens weaves together the author's own experiences with explorations of the place of nonwhites in the broader American cultu. Lalami delves into the ways in which American born citizens as well as immigrants become conditional citizens She elucidates the history of white supremacy from before the actual birth of the US Vis a vis birthplace assimilation religion race class and gender she elucidates how history cultural aspects and policies lead to the negative perceptions about and treatment of those who are not like us Combining solid research and data and personal experience Lalami gives us a sometimes wrenching and angry portrait of the experience of facing the ineuality of being non whiteIn some instances she makes specific assumptions as to the meaning of someone's actions or speech without definitely knowing the intent However possibly that is a result of being conditioned to assuming others perceive you as automatically 'less than' in their eyes It is a challenging book which hinges on the reader's acceptance of one the idea of citizens of this country being considered as 'less than' or conditional and two the facts of this country's white supremacist history Lalami chose to immigrate to this country and loves it Her analyses and criticisms are borne out of that love and hopes of change

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Conditional CitizensExploration of the rights liberties and protections that are traditionally associated with American citizenship Tapping into history politics and literature she elucidates how accidents of birth such as national origin race or gender that once determined the boundaries of Americanness still cast their shadows today Throughout the book she poignantly illustrates how white supremacy survives through adaptation and legislation wit. Lalami has an uniue perspective as a Moroccan born American who gained her citizenship in 2000 a little over a year before 911 She writes this book in chapters that examine some foundations of our country Allegiance Faith Borders Assimilation to name a few Each weaves together her personal narrative with the facts of our nation that shape her experience and awareness of her conditional citizenship which she defines as those Americans whose rights the state finds expendable in the pursuit of white supremacy Lalami an Arab Muslim witnessed full blown American sentiment on the subject of conditional citizens as she lived through 911 and the racism towards Muslims that followed I found myself marking a lot of passages of this book and as I go through them to write this review Lalami's analyses of our country are truly spot on Some of my favorite sections What it means when attendants at her readings ask her about ISIS Would a white author get uestioned about the KKK I was truly horrified that this uestion has come up than once for Lalami Examining borders in the US especially with the huge increase of funds towards border protection from the 1990s to now Her very hilarious and pointed uestion do Americans feel secure within their walls now than they did then The ideal of assimilation in American culture I've used a conversation Lalami had with a white man on a plane about the growing number of Korean Americans in his community in numerous conversations since reading The examining of women reporting sexual harassment and abuse in AmericaExpecting this book to read a little like a memoir or a narrative I was surprised to find so much history and fact Lalami weaves it together very well though as someone who has a harder time with nonfiction it definitely took brain power to absorb than I planned Although I ended up loving most of it I did have a harder time with her last chapter and how she wrapped up her book It's hard to sum up a book that just flashed a mirror to the ugliness within America Lalami chose to give her opinion of what eual citizenship may look like in America Though she made some good points I couldn't help but read it with a new perspective having lived through the first half of 2020 I noticed that the publication date of this book was pushed back from May to October It does make me wonder if Lalami now has to addI won this gook as part of a Goodreads giveaway Thank you Knopf Books