Setting the record straight about Arab American culture
Arabs in America
Building a New Future
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edited by Michael W. Suleiman
For many North Americans, Arab-Americans are invisible, recalled only when words like "terrorism" or "anti-American sentiments" arise. However, people of Arab descent have been contributing to U.S. and Canadian culture since the 1870's in fields as diverse as literature, science, politics, medicine, and commercewitness surgeon Michael DeBakey, former Oregon governor Victor Atiyeh, consumer advocate Ralph Nader, and Canadian M.P. Mac Harb. Yet, while Arab-American contributions to our society are significant and Arab-Americans surpass the U.S. average in both education and economics, they still struggle for recognition and acceptance.
In this volume, editor Michael Suleiman brings together 21 prominent scholars from a wide range of perspectivesincluding anthropology, economics, history, law, literature and culture, political science, and sociologyto take a close look at the status of Arabs in North America. Topics range from the career of Arab-American singer, dancer, and storyteller Wadeeha Atiyeh to a historical examination of Arab-Americans and Zionism. The contributors discuss an assortment of different communitiesa Palestinian refugee community in Detroit, a group of well-educated Jordanian men, and the Shi'a Muslimsin order to illustrate the range of Arab émigré experience. More broadly, they examine Arabs in the legal system, youth and family, health and welfare, as well as Arab-American identity, political activism, and attempts by Arab immigrants to achieve respect and recognition in their new homes. They address both the present situation for Arab-Americans and prospects for their future.
Arabs in America will engage anyone interested in Arab-American studies, ethnic studies, and American studies.
"...important, challenging collection of essays. ...There is much new and compelling material in this anthology. ...No one has a better grasp of the occasionally odd, even bizarre experience of Americans of Arab extraction than Michael Suleiman."
"...this work is generally a valuable addition to the growing literature on Arabs in the United States...and Canada."
"This new collection moves scholarship on Arab Americans well beyond traditional accounts of immigrant adaptation to American society. Arab Americans, as many contributors lament, have been marginal to narratives of multiculturalism in America. But this current research points to the relevance of Arab Americans to our understandings of immigrant-host society relationships, racial hierarchies, and ideologies of citizenship."
"...has a number of fine articles..."
Part I: Profiles of Specific Communities
Part II: Arabs and the American Legal System
Part III: Youth and the Family
Part IV: Health and Welfare Issues
Part V: Political Activism
Part VI: Arab-American Identity Negotiations
About the Contributors
Contributors: Baha Abu-Laban, Sharon McIrvin Abu-Laban, Khristine Ajrouch, Fatima Agha Al-Hayani, Richard T. Antoun, Barbara C. Aswad, Louise Cainkar, Lawrence Davidson, Rosina Hassoun, Ibrahim Hayani, Suad Joseph, Lisa Suhair Majaj, Mohammed Mattar, Kathleen M. Moore, Lori Anne Salem, Therese Saliba, Helen Hatab Samhan, May Seikaly, Janice J. Terry, Linda S. Walbridge, and the editor.