An exploration of identity narratives of Lebanese-Canadians around the time of the July 2006 war in Lebanon

Date

2011-05-06

Authors

Rawdah, Nabiha

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Abstract

The focus of this qualitative study was Lebanese-Canadians‟ identity in the context of global media coverage of the July 2006 war in Lebanon. A narrative inquiry method was used to interview five Lebanese-Canadian participants living in Canada. A descriptive narrative was constructed for each participant, and interview data were analyzed for thematic content. Comments, opinions, and observations were related to media portrayals of Lebanese-Canadians, the government‟s response to the July 2006 war, and the political history between Lebanon and Israel. The results demonstrate that despite a shared ethnic heritage, conceptualizing a Lebanese-Canadian identity is an individual and interactive process that extends beyond citizenship or ethnic ancestry. Moreover, historical and contemporary socio-political issues are inextricably linked to how participants view themselves as Lebanese-Canadians and the meaning this identity status holds for them. These findings suggest that notions of identity and identity-related processes are multifaceted and operate within a highly political context.

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Keywords

Lebanese-Canadians, Israel, Lebanon War, 2006, Identity

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