PRI is all about citizenship this week

several stories worth checking out (audio and text)

Public Radio International's "The World" has a series of stories on citizenship this week at:


A recently-uncovered federal program turned one man's path to citizenship into a 11-year trek

Tarek Hamdi wanted to be a US citizen. The federal government wasn't so sure. He spent 11 years battling bureaucracy and a new federal program to get his citizenship.

What does the US citizenship exam actually test?

The US citizenship has an amazingly high pass rate — but it also has a number of critics. They argue the questions, frankly, are bad. And the test doesn't encourage immigrants to become better citizens, but rather to memorize facts they can write on the test.

Could you pass the test? International citizenship tests are often more interested in cultural quirks than national knowledge

At some level, all countries push new citizens to integrate and that's where civics and language citizenship tests come in. But when you take a longer look at how citizenship exams are developed worldwide, you realize they can have less to do with methodology than promoting a strict cultural identity.

What's the big deal about U.S. citizenship?

Citizenship was once a dream for immigrants. Now, the difference between a green card and citizenship may not be worth the trouble for many.

LIVE CHAT: Why is citizenship so significant in the debate on immigration reform?

What makes the issue of citizenship so divisive? What does the “path to citizenship” look like now and what obstacles already exist for immigrants? What impact might the different plans have on this country? Join an online discussion.