The acknowledgments are usually the place where
the author names the individuals or groups that
have enabled the production of what is inevitably
a collectively shaped artifact, despite the often soli-
tary process of writing. In my case, I am unable to
name those I would really like to thank for making
this book possible—the young people whose stories
I include in this book, as well as their families and
friends, whose names I cannot reveal for reasons of
confidentiality and safety but who allowed me to
narrate their experiences and share their critique. I
am indebted to them for being willing to be so can-
did with me at a time when not just immigrants, but
also citizens, were hesitant to share their views for
fear of backlash. This was a moment that was vari-
ously frustrating, scary, painful, infuriating, and de-
pressing for many—including myself—and I want
to thank these students for their courage and candor
that kept me sane and helped me keep my eyes on
the prize.
I am very grateful to the public high school for
letting me do this research and for giving me such
open access to the teachers and staff, who were in-
credibly generous with their time and let me intrude
into their classrooms. In particular, the director of
the International Student Center was extremely
thoughtful and willing to share his experiences and
insights with me. It is largely due to his support of
the Muslim immigrant students that many of them
found spaces where they could publicly express their
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