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List of named ethnic enclaves in North American cities
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List of named ethnic enclaves in North American cities

This is a list of ethnic enclaves in North American cities. The term ethnic enclave when used in the context of North American cities, has a slightly different meaning than it does when used elsewhere. The formal use of enclave implies a community or population that is essentially trapped within walls and completely surrounded by an unfriendly population or government. In the United States and Canada, the term refers to communities, often of recent immigrants, who have voluntarily chosen to cluster together in a neighborhood, district or suburb.

The signs in the ethnic enclave may be written in language of the community as much or more than in English, and to city residents who are not part of the community, the area is usually a dining and shopping destination and source of "authentic" ethnic food and groceries, such as Chinese cuisine in Chinatowns and Italian restaurants in Little Italys (e.g., newspapers like the New York Times and Los Angeles Times might provide vivid reviews of such ethnic restaurants).

Certain ethnic enclaves may also be promoted as tourist attractions for revenue, sometimes by community business leaders. Services and goods in the area are oriented toward the ethnic group, and the lingua franca for business and social exchanges in the area is the native language of the group. English is also used when conducting transactions with customers outside—even within (especially with American-born descendants of ethnic immigrants)—the ethnic group.

Ethnic enclaves may also be sources of imported goods not easily found or sold in mainstream American retail outlets; for example, Japanese-language popular culture items may be sold in Little Tokyo, Hong Kong cinema Video CDs can be purchased in Chinatown and Bollywood blockbuster DVDs can be found in Little India.

See also: Gay village

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