Arab, Middle Eastern and North African
Culture, History, Statistics & People in Oklahoma

Cultural awareness
The Middle East stretches from Morocco to the eastern Mediterranean counties of Turkey, Israel and on to Iran. For more than a century, people from this region have come to Oklahoma, making a considerable impact on the state’s culture.
Turkish born Nurcihan Uysal and her American children, Meryem and Yakup. STAFF PHOTO BY DAVID CHRISTOPHER
Turkish born Nurcihan Uysal and her American children, Meryem and Yakup. STAFF PHOTO BY DAVID CHRISTOPHER

Turkish people in Oklahoma: Nurcihan Uysal

Updated: Fri, Jun 25, 2010

Although Nurcihan Uysal and her husband, Vahap, are fluent English speakers, they are careful only to speak Turkish to their American born children, Meryem, 3, and Yakup, 2.

Their goal is to have the children grow up to be bilingual and to create a strong bond between the children and their Turkish and Islamic heritage, enabling them to have more in common with their extended family in Turkey.

Arab, Middle Eastern and North African culture in Oklahoma

Updated: Fri, Jun 25, 2010
Olga Rey and Eric Wolfe learn Turkish from Jumeyye Kucuk Osman at the Turkish Rain Drop House.  STAFF PHOTO BY DAVID CHRISTOPHER

The Middle East is a vast region. Including the Arab countries of North Africa, it stretches from Morocco to eastern Mediterranean countries like Turkey and Israel and eastward to Iran. People have come to Oklahoma from the Middle East for more than 100 years and have had a considerable impact on the state’s culture.

The history of Arab, North African and Middle Eastern people in Oklahoma

Updated: Fri, Jun 25, 2010

People from the Middle East first settled in Oklahoma in the late 19th century, often coming in search of entrepreneurial opportunities. It was common for them initially to peddle goods, learn English, and build retail and wholesale businesses.

Arab, North African and Middle Eastern Oklahoman Statistics

Updated: Fri, Jun 25, 2010

2006-2008 American Community Survey 3-Year Estimates for Arab, North African and Middle Eastern Oklahomans



News of Oklahoma's Cultures


Advertisement

Cultures by County