In the Arab world, and mainly in the Gulf region, protecting national identity has become a question of existence. Arab Gulf political leaders have placed this issue at the top of their priorities for several reasons. First, all societies have witnessed the drastic impact of globalization and Gulf societies are no exception. Second, and most important, the influx of millions of workers from all over the world is seen as a real threat to the national identity of Gulf States. A third reason, strictly associated with this huge number of foreign workers, is the imbalance caused within the local population structure. In fact, the number of expatriates is now triple the number of Gulf citizens in, for example, the UAE.
This research was essentially based on an analysis of secondary data published by the Gulf States and agencies and in the Statistical Year Books published by the government of Oman, which include information about demography, economy, governmental plans and employment. Some of the statistics used date back to 2007 and 2008 because they were the latest official figures available. In addition, I relied on primary data collected from questionnaires and through...
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...at “national identity describes that condition in which a mass of people have made the same identification with national symbols - have internalized the symbols of the nation" (1990, 52).
It is also claimed that national identity is part of an individual’s identity and vice versa. National identity is part of everyday life in any nation state (Billig 1995, 7). Mohammed Abdullah defines national identity as “a set of characteristics that give a certain entity its distinctive description” (2008, 2). He further explains that “an identity groups different individuals together and orients them through their different social, political, cultural, psychological and religious classes together, distinguishing them from other groups” (2008, 2). Accordingly, this study deals with the concept of identity in light of these perspectives.
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