An Ancient Heritage: The Arab-American Minority

Brent K. Ashabranner, Author, Paul Conklin, Illustrator, Paul S. Conklin, Photographer HarperCollins Publishers $14.95 (0p) ISBN 978-0-06-020048-0
Profiles of Arab-Americans young and old reflect the seeds of their immigration late in the last century and how things stand today, including nearly up-to-the-minute discussion of the Iraq-Kuwait conflict. Believing that people often dismiss--or even hate--what they don't know or understand, social science writer Ashabranner formulates a sturdy response to the defamation that Arab-Americans often endure. One immigrant points out that Americans don't realize Arabs came here to escape hatred and violence. Placing particular emphasis on how cultural traits came about from the harsh desert environment, the profiles stress close Arab family ties, a driving work ethic and emphasis on education. From this, youngsters can conclude Arab-Americans are more like themselves and other immigrant groups than they are dissimilar. The author reports that most Arab-Americans here feel Jews have turned American opinion against them; one is quoted as saying, ``Arab Americans bear the burden of the Israeli-Arab conflict.'' (Readers will have to look elsewhere for Israel's point of view on the longstanding Palestinian issue.) Impressive photos complement an informative, timely introduction. Ages 8-12. (Apr.)
Reviewed on: 04/01/1991
Release date: 04/01/1991
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