Syrian Peddler

What are you teaching in Spring 2024? Featuring AMCS Lecturer Sami Tayeb

L98 225: Arabs in America: Transcending the Colonial Imaginary

Estevanico (c. 1500–1539)
Syrian peddler









What are some things you'd like to highlight about the course?  

There is a collective amnesia in the United States when it comes to Arab Americans. The events of 9/11 thrust this largely invisible community into the national spotlight, defining them and their experiences for the past two decades, but Arabs have long had an entrenched history in the United States – even before America was America! One of the aims of this course is to explore these subaltern histories, bringing to light the complex experiences and contributions of Arab Americans. I hope for students to understand the milieu in which Arab American race and identity have been socially constructed, and how that has not only affected American perceptions of this community, but also their struggle to define how they are represented in this country. I’m particularly excited to highlight Arab American culture and history in St. Louis and the broader Midwest. 


L98 225: Arabs in America: Transcending the Colonial Imaginary


Sami Tayeb is a lecturer in American Culture Studies. His research and teaching interests focus on political economy and the built environment in the Middle East, as well as Western knowledge production and the architecture of empire. Sami earned his M.A. in Middle East Studies from the American University of Beirut and has lived and worked in several Arab countries, including Palestine, Jordan, Egypt, Lebanon, and Saudi Arabia. Before moving to St. Louis, Sami was the director of Middle East Books and More, a non-profit bookstore in Washington, DC. He has been published in Middle East Report and Washington Report on Middle East Affairs and is currently teaching a new course in AMCS entitled Arabs in America: Transcending the Colonial Imaginary.