What specific challenges does the study of social movements and race/ethnicity in the United States pose for non-US-based scholars? Does distance afford non-US-based scholars possible rewards that make their research a unique contribution to the study of the United States? This edited issue is designed as a symposium in which eleven French-based specialists of various chronological and thematic domains share their experiences and insights on a variety of issues of concern to non-US-based American studies scholars. These relate to the distance between researcher and object, objectivity and engagement, the challenges and rewards of foreignness, as well as the epistemological and methodological positioning of American Studies scholars within the broader field of social science.
The present report summarizes findings from the Detroit Arab American Study pertaining to transnational activities and experiences, particularly those involving communication with the Arab Middle East. In today’s increasingly globalized environment, it is easier than in the past to maintain transnational connections. Indeed, many immigrants of recent decades were undoubtedly participants in transnational networks involving ties to the United States before they came to this country. On the other hand, the intensity of participation in these networks may gradually diminish after years in the United States.