Monday, March 2, 2009

Syrian sweet

had a thought yesterday while enjoying one of those Syrian sweets moms sent. what i miss most... what i savor most here is Arabic food. took it for granted as something always available. always around. even in the States. its absence here i'm not so aware of until i taste some.

i shake my head in disbelief. i smile wide and savor it. it's not just about food. also about culture. how, back home, i took for granted that i have a dual culture. all the Arabic food i ate (and culture i partake in beyond food) was/is inextricably woven into an American context.

*this topic [being bicultural] still confuses me... hard to articulate my thoughts*

i want to say that Arabic food is sweet. the music speaks to me. in the language i find "rootedness." i have no fear of my American identity slipping away... it's there. it's my Arab identity that i worry about.

and every time i taste a bit of our food i'm reminded of this. i'm overjoyed and worried at the same time. i love this. i am this.

and all of 'this' started with a Syrian sweet.


  1. another thought... about an "arab" identity. that often seems too vague. how can "arab" be one culture? can it even be a culture?

    i'm part turkish, kurdish, north african, with an unidentified mix of arabian and eurasian. does the term bicultural (arab and american, in my case) accurately reflect that mix?

    salaam :)

  2. "Arab" is just as vague as "American" if you ask me ;)


    i refer to michael pollan's point about food and culture in the DC Green Muslims post above... and how pollan thinks that "culture," in what it teaches us about food, is just a fancy word for your mother.

    peace :)