Film Screening: "18 Ius Soli (The Right of Soil)" at the International House Philadelphia

Friday, October 19, 2012 - 6:30pm - 9:00pm
Ibrahim Theater, International House Philadelphia, 3701 Chestnut St,
Philadelphia, PA 19104
United States

18 Ius Soli (The Right of Soil) is a 2012 award-winning grassroots Italian documentary about the issue of citizenship for 1,000,000 kids born in Italy. This documentary examines the law that denies citizenship to young people born in Italy of immigrant parents because they have no Italian blood. Admission is free.

The film follows 18 stories of girls and boys born and raised in Italy whose parents are originally from African, Asian, and South American countries, but who moved to and have long lived in different areas of Italy. They are children of immigrants: they go to school in Italy, speak the language and dialects, have never even been to the countries that their parents are from, nor do they speak their parents’ language. Yet they are not recognized as Italian citizens.

To obtain Italian citizenship, they have to go through a lengthy and complicated application process and can only do so after they’ve turned 18 years old – a process that doesn’t always end positively for the applicant, resulting in serious and unavoidable problems of social inclusion and identity. In addition to their stories, the filmmaker Fred Kuwornu interviewed Italian politicians, the Speaker’s House Hon. Gianfranco Fini, and sociologists for their input on the matter.

The film was entirely a grassroots effort produced in Italy, with the end goal being to use it as a platform to create a social awareness campaign, “Sono Nato Qui (I was born here)”, aimed at changing these laws.

A panel discussion on immigration issues and a reception will follow the screening. Panelists include:

  • Fred Kuworno, director of 18 Ios Soli
  • Peter Gonzales, Welcoming Center for New Pennsylvanians, President & CEO
  • Adam Solow, immigration attorney
  • Peter Spiro, professor at Temple University
  • Melanie Johnson from Mayor Nutter’s office and Luigi Scotto, Consul General of Italy will also participate in the event.
Event Type: 
Arts & Culture
International Relations
Global Region: 
Global Region: