Date of Graduation
Master of Arts in Political Science (MA)
Xavier Medina Vidal
Second Committee Member
American dream, American identity, Dreamers, Immigration, Social Citizenship, Social research
Over a decade ago, the Dreamer movement began, led by young undocumented Latinx youth. These activists became known as "Dreamers" who continue to advocate for a pathway to citizenship for all immigrants. Through media, speeches, and artwork, Dreamers use the cultural narrative of the "American Dream" to create the boundaries of their American identity. Traditionally, American Identity is studied through 4 schools of thought: ethno-culturalism, liberalism, civic republicanism, and incorporationism. I offer an analysis of two concepts of American identity, meritocracy, and hyperdocumentation, that are mostly missing from the American identity literature. Additionally, I propose social citizenship as a theory for measuring how Dreamers ascribe to the American identity both explicitly and implicitly. This thesis uses data from the 2016 Blair Center poll and original data from semi-structured interviews conducted in the Northwest Arkansas Region, offering a nuanced analysis of the boundaries of Americanism for Dreamers today.
Campos, A. (2020). Ser Americano: The Cost of Being American. Graduate Theses and Dissertations Retrieved from https://scholarworks.uark.edu/etd/3692