Minorities in Jordan

Identify two people who are members of a social/ethnic/racial/economic minority in your country of study. Ask them about their minority status and how they feel that they are treated by the majority members of the community. Note cultural attitudes that influence the treatment of minority communities in your country of study and how these attitudes differ from the US.


A very significant group of minorities in Jordan is the Christians. Christians have inhabited the Middle East for as long as Christianity has existed, and when Jordan was created as a state, the state included Muslims and Christians. Christians and Muslims live together here in Amman and you frequently see mosques and churches next to each other throughout the city. I spoke with two Christians – one a retired businessman and another a student who works at my school – and they both expressed the feeling that they are treated very well in the country and incorporated 100% into its economy and political life. They both expressed gratitude toward the King because the King has always done everything possible to ensure peace and equanimity between Muslims and Christians and to protect their minority rights. In fact many Muslims in Jordan are very proud of how Jordan society incorporates minority groups – not just Christians, but also Palestinians. These feelings are somewhat different from attitudes in the USA. One of the reasons the attitudes between Muslims and Christians in Jordan are different is that it is very difficult for Jordanian Muslims to say that Jordanian Christians should “go home” or anything like that – since they have lived there forever. In the US of course you frequently hear calls for Muslims or other minority groups to “go home” and this is because of a different history. Muslims have been present in the USA of course since the very beginning of the country but most Americans do not realize this.