Sandra Chait

Seeking Salaam

Ethiopians, Eritreans and Somalis in the Pacific Northwest

University of Washington Press 2011

New Books in African StudiesNew Books in American StudiesNew Books in AnthropologyNew Books in Peoples & PlacesNew Books in Politics & SocietyNew Books in SociologyNew Books Network September 18, 2012 Annie Sepucaia

In the Pacific Northwest, immigrants from Ethiopia, Eritrea and Somalia coexist, making a life for themselves and their family in a new country. In...

In the Pacific Northwest, immigrants from Ethiopia, Eritrea and Somalia coexist, making a life for themselves and their family in a new country. In the book Seeking Salaam : Ethiopians, Eritreans and Somalis in the Pacific Northwest (University of Washington Press, 2011), Sandra Chait goes into these communities to understand the particular issues and conflicts that they face, particularly with each other. Though these immigrants often work together and have children in the same school, tensions among them are high, due to historical as well as current events in the Horn of Africa. Violence and poverty continue to plague these three countries, and news from back home increases the resentment that creates a heavy burden for these immigrants to carry. Chait, herself having grown up in apartheid South Africa, felt a need to bear witness to their stories, and records their narratives with grace and sensitivity. Though Salaam (peace in Arabic) may be difficult to find, these survivors continue to search for it, as they struggle to move on and build a better life.

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