Arab and Jewish Women in Kentucky: Stories of Accommodation and Audacity

Arab and Jewish Women in Kentucky: Stories of Accommodation and Audacity

by Nora Rose Moosnick

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Overview

Some Americans continue to perceive Arab and Jewish immigrants and their descendants as outsiders-outsiders who belong to two distinct groups with a historically adversarial relationship to each other. What happens, though, when Arabs and Jews find themselves in a place such as Kentucky, separated from communities in their home countries or big American cities? As a child in Lexington, Kentucky, Nora Rose Moosnick accompanied her father on his many outings to local stores and businesses and observed that in these situations, Arabs and Jews were brought together by their shared otherness and their shared fears as well as by common interests. Intrigued by the connections she witnessed between these two groups, Moosnick explored the ways in which immigrant communities form and adapt in areas not commonly associated with large immigrant populations, and how these communities allow different minority groups to define themselves and discover their similarities.

During her research, Moosnick was particularly struck by the integral roles played by women in family businesses. In Beyond the Counter: Stories of Arab and Jewish Women in Kentucky, Moosnick demonstrates how immigrant women have long juggled family and work as well as the added struggle stemming from living in two cultures. She interviewed ten women about their experiences as immigrants or the children of immigrants, and about their family businesses, also sharing with them her own interpretation and contextualization. Through these women's stories, the reader sees how Jews and Arabs have negotiated the intersection of tradition, assimilation, and Kentucky's cultural landscape. Beyond the Counter provides insight into the immigrant experience in Kentucky, and will be an important contribution to our Kentucky history list.

This project is being considered for the Kentucky Remembered oral history series.

Nora Rose Moosnick is a visiting scholar in the department of sociology at the University of Kentucky. This is her first book.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780813136219
Publisher: University Press of Kentucky
Publication date: 06/29/2012
Series: Kentucky Remembered: An Oral History Series
Pages: 228
Product dimensions: 6.10(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.00(d)

About the Author

Nora Rose Moosnick is a visiting scholar in the department of sociology at the University of Kentucky. She is the author of Adopting Maternity: White Women Who Adopt Transracially or Transnationally and lives in Lexington, Kentucky.

Table of Contents

Series Foreword vii

Preface ix

Acknowledgments xvii

Introduction 1

1 Complexities 15

2 Publicly Exceptional 35

3 Maternal Echoes 75

4 Into Focus 111

5 Archetypal and Distant Figures 149

Conclusion 173

Postscript: On Being a Documentarian 181

Notes 189

Bibliography 195

Index 201

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