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They call us second generation

I was born in Desenzano del Garda, in Italy, to Moroccan parents. Despite having attended Italian schools, during my childhood I also received a Moroccan education, as my family passed on to me lessons related to the traditions of our country of origin.

My friends are mostly Italian, I have the typical North Italian accent, outside of home I have always frequented places and people who have strengthened my identity as an Italian citizen, as I have become on paper at the age of fourteen. Yet in the eyes of many I am a foreigner.

A few years ago I started a photographic research that reflects and questions about the identity of second generations: the children of immigrants born and raised in Italy. I started from my story, trying to investigate my experience, but now I also want to hear the voices of those who, like me, live in the balance between two realities.

I started by meeting some second generation youths in the city where I currently live, Milan. In a historical moment in which the discussion on the Ius Soli seems to have been put on standby by the Italian political agenda, I want to show the life of those who every day come to terms with the absence of this law and the lucky few who manage to obtain citizenship only at 18 years.

Telling second generations means trying to understand the problems related to identity, and the difficulties that can arise between the family and the host culture. What is the vision of these guys about the future, about love, about friends, and about school?

It is not easy to give an answer, but I believe their stories and a visual investigation of their/our present, can give back to the spectators' eyes an honest image of those who, even amid difficulties and contradictions, have full right to be considered Italian citizens.

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