Race Across Borders: Race and Transnationalism in the First Syrian-American Community, 1890-1930
Abrahim, Zeinab Emad
Zilfi, Madeline C
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This research explores the transnational nature of the citizenship campaign amongst the first Syrian Americans, by analyzing the communication between Syrians in the United States with Syrians in the Middle East, primarily Jurji Zaydan, a Middle-Eastern anthropologist and literary figure. The goal is to demonstrate that while Syrian Americans negotiated their racial identity in the United States in order to attain the right to naturalize, they did so within a transnational framework. Placing the Syrian citizenship struggle in a larger context brings to light many issues regarding national and racial identity in both the United States and the Middle East during the turn of the twentieth century.