Kate Hepworth, Olivia Hamilton

«Let me Stay Home»: belonging, place and second-generation youth in Italy

  • Abstract

Informations and abstract

Keywords: Second-generation; Citizenship; Belonging; Identity; Racialisation.

This paper examines what it means to be 'at home' for second-generation Italians, whose struggle for recognition of legal citizenship in the place in which they were raised problematises more general notions of belonging to the nation. Proceeding from an incident in Milan in September 2008, when 19-year-old Abdoul Guiebre was murdered by two shopkeepers in a racist attack purportedly for having stolen a packet of biscuits, we examine the subsequent occupation of Milan by Abdoul's friends. We then move on to discuss the repercussions of this event for the group Rete G2, an association of young second-generation Italians active in opening up definitions of Italian identity and lobbying government to change Italy's "jus sanguinis" citizenship laws. We discuss how such claims for a place to call home introduce tensions in both the conceptual spaces of national identity and the material places of Italy's cities.

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