Another Arabesque: Syrian-Lebanese Ethnicity in Neoliberal Brazil

Karam, John Tofik

Published by Temple University Press
ISBN 10: 1592135390 / ISBN 13: 9781592135394
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Synopsis: Offering a novel approach to the study of ethnicity in the neoliberal market, "Another Arabesque "is the first full-length book in English to focus on the estimated seven million Arabs in Brazil. With insights gained from interviews and fieldwork, John Tofik Karam examines how Brazilians of Syrian-Lebanese descent have gained greater visibility and prominence as the country has embraced its globalizing economy, particularly its relations with Arab Gulf nations. At the same time, he recounts how Syrian-Lebanese descendents have increasingly self-identified as Arabs. Karam demonstrates how Syrian-Lebanese ethnicity in Brazil has intensified through market liberalization, government transparency, and consumer diversification. Utilizing an ethnographic approach, he employs current social and business phenomena as springboards for investigation and discussion. Uncovering how Arabness appears in places far from the Middle East, "Another Arabesque "makes a new and valuable contribution to the study of how identity is formed and shaped in the modern world.

Review: "Another Arabesque is excellent and exciting. It is full of valuable and new materials on Arabs and Arabs in Brazil. It is well documented in the area of theory and innovative in its approach. Karam brings to the study an exciting approach, well-written and full of ethnographic insight." Barbara Aswad, Wayne State University "Both theoretically sophisticated and firmly grounded in meticulous ethnographic research, it will be of interest to Brazilianists and those interested in cultural manifestations of neo-liberal economic policy and doctrine." Joshua Roth, Mount Holyoke College "Another Arabesque is a valuable and interesting exploration of the evolution of Brazil's successful Middle Eastern community in a variety of contexts...The book provides an intriguing insight into the formerly concealed extent to which Arab culture has influenced this Latin American powerhouse." The Latin Review of Books "Karam describes in detail how Arab identity has intensified under liberalization...This exhaustive ethnography approaches Arab Brazilian lives as an interconnected whole, examining not only business but also politics, marriage and interpersonal relationships, leisure and tourism." NACLA "Karam's concise, well-wrought account of the intensification of Syrian-Lebanese (i.e., Arab) identity is a significant contribution to a burgeoning literature on ethnicity in Brazil...Drawing on an impressive range of materials, including historical documents, newspaper reports, ethnographic vignettes, interviews, and soap operas, he provides a rich account of the trajectory of a Brazilian ethnic category. While the book offers intriguing sketches rather than in-depth explorations of individuals, it compensates by thinking big, historically, and geographically." The Luso-Brazilian Review "By approaching his investigation from an anthropological perspective, Karam contributes to understanding the Syrian-Lebanese phenomenon through time in Brazil...The book contributes to the study of the relationship between ethnic identity and nation construction by asking questions that go beyond the explanations derived from colonial logic...the book provides an ethnographic perspective that proposes new forms of observation and data collection that are very relevant to social studies. As such, it will stand as one of the most useful in the field." Latin American Politics and Society "This is an engaging and theoretically provocative ethnography that focuses on an ethnic community that has not received much attention from anthropologists studying Brazil... Another Arabesque [makes] an important contribution to understanding ethnicity, nationalism, and globalization in Brazil and elsewhere." Journal of Latin American and Caribbean Anthropology

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Title: Another Arabesque: Syrian-Lebanese Ethnicity...
Publisher: Temple University Press
Book Condition: Fair

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