Lifting the “Veil” Off the Literature of the Arab American Diaspora

Hayder Naji Shanbooj Alolaiwi


Although Arab-American literature has been in existence in the U.S. for over a century, it has only recently begun to be recognized as part of the ethnic landscape of literary America. However, the last two decades have seen a dramatic increase in the publication by Arab-American writers. This literary burgeoning reflects in part the shifting historical, social, and political contexts that have pushed Arab-Americans to the foreground, creating both new spaces for their voices and new urgencies of expression, as well as the flourishing creativity of these writers. From the 500-years-long presence of the Arabs on the North American continent, I have chosen three significant moments of reference, defining for the construction of the Americans’ awareness of the Arabic presence in the American cultural landscape.


Diaspora; Ethnicity; Race; Arab American; Minority; Identity

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