Between Homelands: Hope, Fear and Longing in America

Series produced by Bending Borders

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PRX default Series image 

In this hour-long special, nine stories from immigrants who left their homelands for America, but find themselves somewhere in between. A Nigerian pop star, an Iraqi Kurdish restaurant owner, a group of Central American women and others make the journey to America, only to be reeled back home.

Some might be reeled back by the trauma and conflict they left behind. Others might try to recreate a piece of their homelands here in America, while still others might stay put while the ground beneath them fundamentally changes.

All of them -- the Tongva woman who builds a canoe to connect her to her culture, the Malaysian woman who learns to be a virtual mom to her kids 9,000 miles away, the daughter who reopens her father's traumatic history with China's Cultural Revolution -- all of them, though they've made it to the United States, still can't fully leave their homelands.

Each of these short audio documentaries was produced by a graduate student at USC's Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism in collaboration with Bending Borders. "Between Homelands" is available as a one-hour special for public radio or as a collection of individual stories. Hide full description

Some might be reeled back by the trauma and conflict they left behind. Others might try to recreate a piece of their homelands here in America, while still others might stay put while the ground beneath them fundamentally changes.All of them -- the Tongva woman who builds a canoe to connect her to her culture, the Malaysian woman who learns to be a virtual mom to her kids 9,000 miles away, the daughter who reopens her father's traumatic history with China's Cultural Revolution -- all of them, though they've made it to the United States, still can't fully leave their homelands.Each of these short audio documentaries was produced by a graduate student at USC's Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism in collaboration with Bending Borders. "Between Homelands" is available as a... Show full description


9 Pieces

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In this hour-long special, nine stories from immigrants who left their homelands for America, but find themselves somewhere in between. A Nigerian ...

Bought by WNIJ and KAZU


  • Added: Jul 01, 2015
  • Length: 53:21
  • Purchases: 2
Caption: Kurdish and United States flags fly at Niroj Kurdish Cuisine’s bar., Credit: Taylor Haney
Luqman Barwari abandoned his career to open a Kurdish restaurant in the U.S., a meeting place where immigrant Kurds can keep memories of home alive.

Bought by New Hampshire Public Radio


  • Added: Jul 01, 2015
  • Length: 04:54
  • Purchases: 1
Caption: Hratch Sepetjian stands in front of his class on a typical day. He gets frustrated when his students do not take the Armenian lessons seriously., Credit: Andy Vasoyan
A century after Armenians fled genocide in 1915, language teacher Hratch Sepetjian is fighting to keep their dialect – Western Armenian – alive in ...

  • Added: Jul 01, 2015
  • Length: 04:09
Caption: A Ti’at Society member paints a red ocher detail onto Moomat Ahiko’s side., Credit: Stephanie Case
Native Tongvan woman Cindi Alvitre lives on her ancestors' land in the Los Angeles basin, but in a completely different world. So she follows a viv...

  • Added: Jul 01, 2015
  • Length: 05:12
Piece image
Victor Figueroa looks the part of a Hispanic, but some call him a "fake Puerto Rican," since he doesn't speak Spanish and knows few customs. Here,...

Bought by KBCS 91.3 FM Community Radio


  • Added: Jul 01, 2015
  • Length: 03:52
  • Purchases: 1
Caption: A young Belinda Cai and her father., Credit: Belinda Cai
Belinda Cai knew only the outline of her father’s childhood in China's Cultural Revolution. Recently, when she asked her father for details, she wa...

Bought by XRAY.fm


  • Added: Jul 01, 2015
  • Length: 05:41
  • Purchases: 1
Caption: CY Dieyi performs a cover of Rihanna’s “FourFiveSeconds” on stage at an event in Inglewood, CA., Credit: Myah Williams
In her native Nigeria, Cynthia Dieyi is a pop singer who celebrates her culture through her music. But here in America, she's still unknown, and h...

Bought by WAMC


  • Added: Jul 01, 2015
  • Length: 04:17
  • Purchases: 1
Caption: Pastor Monsalve preaches from her storefront church in Torrance, California., Credit: Phoenix Tso
Margarita Monsalve operates a sewing circle in Torrance, California, where unaccompanied migrant girls from Central America find a strong community...

Bought by KBCS 91.3 FM Community Radio


  • Added: Jul 01, 2015
  • Length: 05:13
  • Purchases: 1
Caption: Lupe Herrera, Credit: Charles Magovern
Lupe Herrera has all the protections of United States citizenship, but none of that is guaranteed to her brother and parents. This legal crack in t...

Bought by KZMU Moab Community Radio, KUER, KSFR, and KBCS 91.3 FM Community Radio


  • Added: Jul 01, 2015
  • Length: 04:16
  • Purchases: 4