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The 1990 census indicates that most Arab Americans are U. citizens (82 percent) even though only 63 percent were born in the United States.Arab Americans are geographically concentrated in a handful of cities and states.Arab Americans trace their ancestral roots to several Arab countries.Lebanon is the homeland of a majority of Arab Americans, followed by Syria, Palestine, Iraq, Egypt, Yemen, and Jordan.The discrepancy is partly due to the standardization of Arabs in the United States, leading many to conceal their ethnic affiliation.
Previous estimates by scholars and Arab American community organizations placed the number of Arab Americans at between one and three million.
The Arab world consists of 21 countries that span from North Africa to the Persian Gulf. and its phenomenal expansion over parts of Asia, Africa, and Europe, Arabic culture and language spread to the newly conquered peoples.
Ethnic Arabs inhabited the Arabian Peninsula and neighboring areas. Over time the Arab identity lost its purely ethnic roots as millions in the Middle East and North Africa adopted the Arabic language and integrated Arab culture with that of their own.
The major exception to this pattern was a small group of Arab writers, poets, and artists who took up residence in major urban centers such as New York and Boston.
The most famous of the group was Kahlil Gibran (1883-1931), author of The Prophet and numerous other works.