31 December 2006

1337) Shifting Turkish American Identity Formations In The United States By Ilhan Kaya

Abstract .. Viii
Introduction ....1
Literature Review..7
The Nature Of Identity8
Globalization, The World System, And Identities .......12
Theories Of Ethnic And Group Identities 18
The Assimilationist Perspective .19
Primordial Perspectives Vs. Instrumentalist/Circumstantialist Perspectives.....20
The Constructionist Approach ...22
America As Context ...26
Locating Turkishness In Time And Space.29
Closing Thoughts ....31
Methodology.33
Methods Of Data Gathering ..33
In-Depth Interviews .34
Fieldwork..39
Other Methods40
Analysis.......41
Reflections42
Turkish Immigration History.........45
The First Immigration Wave: The Ottoman Turks ........47
The Great Return.......51
The Second Wave Of Immigration: Professionals .........54
The Third Wave Of Immigration (1980-2000): Diverse Groups .....57
The Number And Location Of Turks In America And New York Turks ......59
Turkish Political History67
Breaking Away From The Past 68
The Struggle For Power And Clash Of Identities ....70
Closing Thoughts ....75
Identifying Turkishness....77
Who Is A Turk?.78
Westerness And Middle Easterness......82
Disassociation With Arabs ......86
A) Historical Reasons .....87
B) Ideological Reasons ...90
C) Sociological Reasons..91
Some Notes On Ethnicity And Nationality Among Turkish Americans .....95
Closing Thoughts ....96
Turkish Americanness ........98
Competing Identities .....99
The First Generation And Questions Of Belonging106
The Second Generation And Painful Integration ..110
Trapped Between Two Worlds.111
Gender Struggles ..113
Generational Struggles......114
Some Notes On Generational Differences .....115
Closing Thoughts ..118
Identity Construction Sites119
Labor Market Spaces ..119
Social Institutions.129
Schools....129
Mosques..132
Organizations And Politics ..135
Cultural Spaces .....138
The Turkish Day Parade And Turkish Cultural Festival ....142
Closing Thoughts ..146
Conclusions...148 . .

Closing Thoughts ..157
Appendix A..159
Interview Questions 159
Appendix B: Biographical Sketches Of The Interviewees...165
Appendix C: Pictures From The Turkish American Community In The New York
Metropolitan Area...170
Appendix D: Turkish American Organizations..184
Appendix E: Approval Memorandum From The Human Subjects Committee..195
References .....196
Biographical Sketch.........203

List Of Figures
Figure 1: Turkish Immigration To The U.S. (1820-2000).......46
Figure 2: Turkish Immigration To The U.S. Before Wwii ...48
Figure 3: Turkish Immigration To The U.S. Between 1930 And 1980 ..55
Figure 4: Turkish Immigration To The U.S. After 1989........58
Figure 5: Turkish-Americans By State (2000) .....64
Figure 6: Turkish Americans In New York...65
Figure 7: Turkish Americans In California .65
Figure 8: Turkish Americans In New Jersey.66
Figure 9: Turkish Americans In Florida.......66

ABSTRACT
This dissertation examines Turkish-American identity formations in the United States. Through a case study based in the New York metropolitan area, this study explores how the contestation and negotiation of Turkish ethnicity and Turkish-American identity is grounded in place and across space. It examines Turkish-Americaness in relation to Westerness, Muslimness, Arabness, Americaness, and Turkishness. The study problematizes ethnic and racial labels such as Muslim Americans in the United States by examining the multiplicity, contextuality, complexity, fluidity, and temporarility of Turkish (and Muslim) identities and the role of different locales (the United States and Turkey) in the construction of Turkishness. The dissertation investigates the role of Turkish and American politics and culture in the construction of Turkish-American identities, and focuses on generational, class and gender differences among Turkish Americans. It suggests that Turkish-American identities are spatially constituted as they represent a ground on which temporary and ever-changing boundaries are marked between inside and outside, the same and the other. These boundaries stress not only distinction or difference but also interconnection. In addition, this dissertation examines the history of Turkish immigration to the United States and provides empirical data about Turkish-American institutions and the distribution of Turkish-American populations throughout the United States.

2003


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