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Prolonged violence in the Horn of Africa, the northeastern corner of the continent, has led growing numbers of Ethiopians, Eritreans, and Somalis to flee to the United States. Despite the enmity created by centuries of conflict, they often find themselves living as neighbors in their adopted cities, with their children as class-mates in school. In many ways, they are successfully navigating life in their new home; however, they continue to struggle to bridge old ethnic divisions and find salaam, or peace, with one another. News from home fuels historical grievances and perpetuates tensions within their communities, delaying acculturation, undermining attempts at reconciliation, and sabotaging the opportunity to reach the American Dream.

In conversations with forty East African immigrants living in Seattle, Washington, and Portland, Oregon, Sandra Chait captures the immigrants' struggle for identity in the face of competing stories and documents how some individuals have been able to transcend the ghosts from the past and extend a tentative hand to their former enemies.

Seeking salaam - Sandra M. Chait

9780295991436
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Title
Seeking salaam - Ethiopians, Eritreans, and Somalis in the Pacific Northwest
Author
Sandra M. Chait
format
Hardback
Publisher
University of Washington Press
Language
English
UK Publication Date
20111201

Prolonged violence in the Horn of Africa, the northeastern corner of the continent, has led growing numbers of Ethiopians, Eritreans, and Somalis to flee to the United States. Despite the enmity created by centuries of conflict, they often find themselves living as neighbors in their adopted cities, with their children as class-mates in school. In many ways, they are successfully navigating life in their new home; however, they continue to struggle to bridge old ethnic divisions and find salaam, or peace, with one another. News from home fuels historical grievances and perpetuates tensions within their communities, delaying acculturation, undermining attempts at reconciliation, and sabotaging the opportunity to reach the American Dream.

In conversations with forty East African immigrants living in Seattle, Washington, and Portland, Oregon, Sandra Chait captures the immigrants' struggle for identity in the face of competing stories and documents how some individuals have been able to transcend the ghosts from the past and extend a tentative hand to their former enemies.

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Sandra M. Chait, who immigrated to the Unites States from South Africa, taught African literature and served as associate director of the University of Washington's Program on Africa. She is an independent scholar in Seattle.

An important book for a nation seeking peace with itself as well as with its new immigrant arrivals who are redefining equality, citizenship, and democracy.


Oregon Historical Quarterly - Robert D. Thompson

Sandra M. Chait is to be commended for capturing the complex interrelationship of 20th and 21st century immigrant communities from the Horn of Africa as they engage in healing the wounds of wars and finding salaam - peace - in their adopted country.


Journal of Immigrant and Refugee Studies - Ruth Iyob

Chait wove their stories into a book, Seeking Salaam, that captures the complexity of identity and the horror and hopefulness of life for her subjects.


The Seattle Times - Jerry Large

[Seeking Salaam] grants the reader valuable insight into the immigrant experience of Horn Africans in the Pacific Northwest."-


Pacific Northwest Quarterly - Robin Hardy

Type
BOOK
Keyword Index
Ethiopians - Northwest, Pacific - Social conditions.|Ethiopians - Northwest, Pacific - Ethnic identity.|Eritreans - Northwest, Pacific - Social conditions.|Eritreans - Northwest, Pacific - Ethnic identity.|Somalis - Northwest, Pacific - Social conditions.|Somalis - Northwest, Pacific - Ethnic identity.|Pacific, Northwest - Ethnic relations.
Country of Publication
Washington (State)
Number of Pages
298

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