Title

Becoming White: Contested History, Armenian American Women, and Racialized Bodies

Document Type

Article

Department

Women's Studies

Abstract

This essay traces the historical process by which Armenians became legally white in the United States, demonstrating how arguments for Armenian whiteness were used as part of a larger strategy to exclude other Asian immigrants from nationalization in the early twentieth century. For late twentieth-century Armenian Americans, the conditions of racial whiteness include the erasure of Armenian history and the assimilation of Armenian bodies into European gender norms. Through a reading of Carol Edgarian’s Rise, the Euphrates, the essay argues for an Armenian American female subject that resists race and gender assimilation as well as historical erasure.

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