Arab Americans: Between Conflicting Definitions of Belonging


Arab Americans

How to Cite

Mullin, J. (1). Arab Americans: Between Conflicting Definitions of Belonging. Al-Raida Journal, 67-70.


As a proud-to-be Arab American woman who has resided in Lebanon for the past few years, my interest was immediately peaked when I heard that an issue of Al-Raida was to be dedicated to “Arab diaspora women”. I could not help but wonder who exactly would be represented in the issue because, as I have learned, what the category "Arab Women" refers to and how exactly they are defined for many among Arab diasporic communities often differs with the more commonly accepted definitions in the Arab region. Of course, nothing is clear-cut when it comes to identity. Individuals of diverse ethnic, religious or cultural backgrounds often identify in numerous ways. There are, however, general patterns that can be discerned in how communities are defined or categorized amongst Arab American populations and those in the Arab Middle East; and it is the differences in these definitions that conflict with one another in rather fundamental ways.


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