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Presentation Type

Oral Presentation

Subjects

Minorities -- United States -- Social conditions, United States -- Ethnic relations, Arab Americans -- Ethnic identity, Arab Americans -- Race identity

Department

Social Science

Advisor

Rebecca Summer

Student Level

Undergraduate

Abstract

My oral presentation will discuss the categorization of Arab Americans as white in the U.S. census and examine evidence that demonstrates that contrary to the current designation, many Arab Americans and non-Arab Americans within the United States do not view Arab Americans as white. I will contextualize general concepts of race and ethnicity as they relate to Arab American identity; examine the history of Arab American census designation and look at how and why Arabs came to be known as white in the United States; review the treatment of Arab Americans, pre and post 9/11 and within the context of racialized political shock; discuss ways in which Arab Americans face discrimination; and consider some of the challenges that have prevented change in the past. Finally, I propose adding a new category in the census that would allow Arab Americans to self-identify ethnically, without being counted as white statistically, and explain how this new category would address some of the harms caused by discrimination against Arab Americans today.

Persistent Identifier

https://archives.pdx.edu/ds/psu/35433

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Arab Americans and Census Reclassification: Recognition is Due

My oral presentation will discuss the categorization of Arab Americans as white in the U.S. census and examine evidence that demonstrates that contrary to the current designation, many Arab Americans and non-Arab Americans within the United States do not view Arab Americans as white. I will contextualize general concepts of race and ethnicity as they relate to Arab American identity; examine the history of Arab American census designation and look at how and why Arabs came to be known as white in the United States; review the treatment of Arab Americans, pre and post 9/11 and within the context of racialized political shock; discuss ways in which Arab Americans face discrimination; and consider some of the challenges that have prevented change in the past. Finally, I propose adding a new category in the census that would allow Arab Americans to self-identify ethnically, without being counted as white statistically, and explain how this new category would address some of the harms caused by discrimination against Arab Americans today.