Date of Award

12-2008

Degree Name

Master of Arts

Department

Anthropology

First Advisor

Dr. Vincent Lyon-Callo

Second Advisor

Dr. Allen Zagarell

Third Advisor

Dr. Laura Spielvogel

Access Setting

Masters Thesis-Campus Only

Abstract

My research for this thesis focuses on the city of Dearborn, Michigan. I investigate the discursive forums of identity amongst Arab Americans living in Dearborn. I look to answer whether or not such homogenous communities, like the Arab American community, really exist. If there is such a community that is homogenous, then whose construct is it? I also investigate whether or not Arab Americans identify themselves as being Arab or American. My investigation in this thesis touches on all of these aspects. In order to carry out my analysis, I used an institution in the city of Dearborn to collect my data. This institution is the Arab American National Museum. There I constructed multiple interviews with staff members and directors in connection to Arab American identity in the city of Dearborn to emphasize my theory that the Arab American National Museum is not only a museum filled with artifacts, but also a reinstatement of Arab American identity.

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