By Nadine Naber
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Additional resources for Arab America: Gender, Cultural Politics, and Activism
Led wars and anti-Arab racism. Many of my interlocutors and I were engaged in a similar project Introduction >> 21 that believes in the potential of Arab and Muslim counternarratives to shift the balance of powers. S. discourses represent family, gender, sexuality, religion, and culture among Arab Americans and the diverse ways Arab Americans live these concepts. My interpretations of their stories were shaped as much by the analyses they shared as by my own. This reciprocity of analytical work is the reason why I refer to them as my interlocutors rather than subjects or interviewees.
Arab countries include a diversity of linguistic, ethnic, and religious groups. Religious groups include, but are not limited to, Christians, Jews, and Druze. Non-Arab ethnic minorities include, but are not limited to, Kurds, Amazighs, and Armenians. Thus, there are many challenges that come with efforts to name Arab immigrants and Arab Americans. The religious, ethnic, and linguistic diversity of the Arab region gives at least some insight into why the federal government as well as Arab individuals and communities have found reaching a consensus over who is an Arab and what constitutes Arabness to be a particularly arduous task.
Old-timers who did not come in a context of war remained in the Bay Area as a consequence of the imbalance in socioeconomic opportunities in the United States compared to their countries of origin. S. discourses were emphasizing racial integration and, to a large degree, assimilation (Brodkin 2002). Most of them were not exceptionally wealthy in their homelands and came primarily from families involved in trading and agriculture. Most often, their extended family members pooled funds so one or two family members could migrate to the United States.