Mon, 13 June 2022
Even though writer and humorist Wajahat Ali was born and raised in Northern California to Pakistani parents, he gets told every day to "go back to where you came from.” Today, more than half of US citizens under 18 can trace their ancestry to Africa, Asia, and Latin America, yet many feel unwelcome in their own country. “The tragic history of America is that the rest of us have fought for a country and love a country when it doesn’t love us back,” Wajahat told Ray Suarez in a recent interview about his new memoir, Go Back to Where You Came From: And Other Helpful Recommendations on How to Become American. Wajahat takes readers on a journey to his childhood, figuring out the lines and boundaries of race and ethnicity on the fly, to an adulthood punctuated by the September 11 terrorist attacks, and an era of rising anxiety and suspicion of brown people of various origins in the years after. Through his personal stories, Ali manages to tackle the dangers of Islamophobia and white supremacy, with humor and insights into national security, immigration, and pop culture.
Host: Ray Suarez, host of World Affairs
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