Culture in the ‘politics of identity’: conceptions of national identity and citizenship among second generation non-Gulf Arab migrants in Dubai

Akinci, Idil (2019) Culture in the ‘politics of identity’: conceptions of national identity and citizenship among second generation non-Gulf Arab migrants in Dubai. Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies. ISSN 1369-183X

[img] PDF (This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies on 06..03.19, available online: https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/1369183X.2019.1583095) - Accepted Version
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Abstract

Based on a year long ethnographic study in Dubai, this article explores the following: How do second-generation Arab migrants articulate and negotiate the legal and social boundaries they are subjected to? I take into consideration the relative cultural proximity this group have to Emirati citizens, as well as the growing anti-Muslim and Arab sentiments in the West, and how these may implicate their experiences and narrations of citizenship and national identity. The majority of respondents did not wish to attempt to emulate ‘Emiratiness’, not only because of their lived experiences of exclusion from the Emirati community, but also because they saw a degree of dissonance between their lifestyles and cultural identities and that of Emiratis. While each participant had a distinct notion of what their ‘Arab culture and traditions’ meant, the umbrella of ‘Arabness’ which typifies the UAE was seen as preferable to the increasingly racialized and exclusionary forms of governance enacted within the West. A central paradox emerged when some second-generation migrants claimed a shared culture to the Emirati community and performed Emiratiness. This was on the basis of their historical and cultural ties to the region and, more importantly, their family connections with the Emirati community.

Item Type: Article
Schools and Departments: School of Global Studies > Geography
Depositing User: Sharon Krummel
Date Deposited: 15 Mar 2019 11:06
Last Modified: 01 Jul 2019 18:30
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/82549

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