How Does It Feel to Be a Problem?

by

Moustafa Bayoumi

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Bay Ridge Term Analysis

A middle-class neighborhood in Southwest Brooklyn where several of Bayoumi’s subjects live. Historically dominated by Greek, Norwegian, Irish, and Italian immigrant communities, Bay Ridge has become the epicenter of Arab American life in New York over the last few decades.
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Bay Ridge Term Timeline in How Does It Feel to Be a Problem?

The timeline below shows where the term Bay Ridge appears in How Does It Feel to Be a Problem?. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Preface
Racism, Discrimination, and Foreign Policy Theme Icon
Talking and smoking with his friends at a hookah café in Bay Ridge , Brooklyn, 24-year-old Palestinian-American Sade is distraught to have learned that someone he considered a... (full context)
Rasha
Arab American Identities Theme Icon
...Gaby from Ecuador and Nicky from Azerbaijan. After graduation, Rasha’s family buys a house in Bay Ridge ; in September 2001, she begins college. On September 11, Rasha’s mother says she cannot... (full context)
Yasmin
Racism, Discrimination, and Foreign Policy Theme Icon
Growing Up and Self-Discovery Theme Icon
Justice, Activism, and the Future of American Democracy Theme Icon
...Fort Hamilton High School in the wealthy, quiet, tree-lined area of the same name in Bay Ridge , Yasmin stumbles into student government, filling out the onerous application and gathering the necessary... (full context)
Akram
Racism, Discrimination, and Foreign Policy Theme Icon
Arab American Identities Theme Icon
...Akram at an Egyptian-run Dunkin’ Donuts in Sunset Park, a neighborhood of southwest Brooklyn near Bay Ridge . Akram remembers going to Edward R. Murrow High School in the ethnically diverse neighborhood... (full context)
Racism, Discrimination, and Foreign Policy Theme Icon
Growing Up and Self-Discovery Theme Icon
Justice, Activism, and the Future of American Democracy Theme Icon
Akram sometimes hangs out with his friends at unassuming shisha cafés in Bay Ridge , although he does not smoke. (Like the often Muslim-run Dunkin’ Donuts shops, these cafés... (full context)
Lina
Arab American Identities Theme Icon
Growing Up and Self-Discovery Theme Icon
Bayoumi meets Lina in 2006 at a Bay Ridge café, where she smokes and smiles with a rebellious energy that reflects her private conflicts... (full context)
Arab American Identities Theme Icon
Growing Up and Self-Discovery Theme Icon
...her father gets a job in Brooklyn, they move “into a drab concrete building in Bay Ridge .” She takes a cross-country bus to break up with Zaki, who is cheating on... (full context)
Omar
Arab American Identities Theme Icon
Faith, Tradition, and Islam Theme Icon
Growing Up and Self-Discovery Theme Icon
At a Bay Ridge shisha café, Omar tells Bayoumi how the engagement would go: his grandfather would call Nadine’s father... (full context)
Arab American Identities Theme Icon
Growing Up and Self-Discovery Theme Icon
Justice, Activism, and the Future of American Democracy Theme Icon
...looks the part, too; people scarcely recognize him as Arab, even at shisha cafés in Bay Ridge . This makes the discrimination he experiences all the more frustrating. It was also part... (full context)
Racism, Discrimination, and Foreign Policy Theme Icon
Arab American Identities Theme Icon
Justice, Activism, and the Future of American Democracy Theme Icon
...even more connected to—or trapped in—his identity. He starts going to a discussion group in Bay Ridge , led by a relatable imam who emphasizes Muslims’ “public relations problem.” This makes Omar... (full context)
Rami
Faith, Tradition, and Islam Theme Icon
Justice, Activism, and the Future of American Democracy Theme Icon
...Israel and Lebanon at war, Bayoumi sits with Rami and Ezzat, his friend, in a Bay Ridge Dunkin’ Donuts. Rami is 19, thoughtful, and muscular; Ezzat, 21, is talkative and just as... (full context)