A world once filled with Asian friends and neighbors crashes harshly as Jin is left stranded in a white dominated school. Stereotypes and teasing are quickly placed on him from his racial background. Still new to the area, Jin presumes, “The only other Asian in my class was Suzy Nakamura. When the class finally figured out that we weren’t related, rumors began to circulate that Suzy and I were arranged to be married on her thirteenth birthday. We avoided each other as much as possible” (Yang 31). Embarrassment clouds Jin as he realizes that he’s not like the other kids in his class. With distinct features and his native tongue, Jin felt like a reject surrounded by his Caucasian classmates. He was entirely alone amongst his peers, and he didn’t like that one single bit. In this way, it’s clear how both Junior and Jin felt like outcasts in these two oceans of white students and teachers.
What this novel does not touch on is the harsh levels of discrimination that some Asian-American families faced during the 20th centuries, some people telling at them to go back to Vietnam, Korea, or wherever they came from, some refusing service, perhaps throwing them out for being different, similarly to how African-Americans were treated during that time, and similar to how some Muslims are being treated today. However, more insidious than moments of outright hostility, and maybe more powerful, are the constant weak reminders that you’re different, that you’re not one of them. The “sign at the Peking Express” (Ng 193), the “little boys on the playground, stretching their eyes to slits with their fingers” (Ng 193), you even “saw it when waitresses and policemen and bus drivers spoke slowly to you, in simple words, as if you might not understand” (Ng 193). All these tiny things, these little reminders that you’re not the same as everyone else around you, may have more impact on the people being discriminated against than blatant in-your-face
The topics “Can You Use that Word in a Sentence,” and Racial Representation is significant throughout the book Long Division written by Kiese Laymon. The characters in this book will have to face racism and learn to defy racial representations, especially during the scene of the quiz contest. Overall, this essay will tackle the importance of language in the book Long Division and analyze the actions of the characters and the emotions they display. This essay will examine the words written and the racism experienced during the period using the two sources and research made to understand the importance of language in racism. Long Division, the book written by Kiese Laymon is an intriguing and gripping novel. It starts off with the main character Citoyen “City” Coldson a fourteen year-old boy; he participates in a nationwide televised quiz contest. However noticing that the contest is extremely racist, his outburst on stage goes viral. Shortly, City moves to live with his grandmother. He’s been given a book, before leaving, titled “Long Division”. The main character of the book has the same name as City yet it is set in 1985. A young girl named Baize Shephard has been missing in City’s new community. Yet, when Baize Shephard appears as a character in City’s strange book, both stories link and converge together. Citoyen “City” Coldson and LaVander Peeler are the only two black participants in the “Can You Use that Word in a Sentence” contest. There were many scenes that
The tale “American Born Chinese” by Gene Luch Wang depicts the story of three characters, Monkey, Jin, and Danny. They all have the problem of fitting into their new environments. Jin Wang has to deal with Asian stereotypes. Danny has to deal with embarrassment of his cousin. Lastly, Monkey has to deal with the fact that there is no position for him in the heavenly ranks. However, over time, these characters have to come together to fit in. Yet the question remains: what exactly about fitting in is the problem? Although Jin Wang takes the form of Danny to reject his Chinese roots, the embarrassment of Chin-Knee shows he cannot hide behind a false American identity, thereby delineating that race is the source of his problem.
His foolish acts get him into five hundred years of trouble at the hands of Tze-Yo-Tzuh, and the Monkey King must then rely on the trust of a stranger to lead him toward redemption. In another story, Danny is a popular athletic teenager whose life is amazing until his cousin Chin-Kee arrives from China. Chin-Kee is the epitome of Chinese stereotypes—eating cat gizzards, excelling in classes, speaking in broken English—and Danny wants to hide him away and pretend he does not exist. But Chin-Kee ends up going to school with Danny every day, ruining Danny’s reputation. American Born Chinese undergoes phases of identity crises that are coupled with some sort of mental or physical transformation. This is a great novel to explore the diversity of students and how different elements affect their culture. The big question of the unit also allows for students to recognize stereotypes in order to see the implications that can have on the people the labels are placed on and how some labels may be placed on them for having a particular quality, gender, race, etc. The ending and tone of the novel also will help students with recognizing the need for accepting others while seeing that every person should seek for his or her own
Well-known author Amy Tan, in her short narrative “Fish Cheeks”, writes about the embarrassment she has because of her culture and ethnicity. She talks about this when a white father and his son, Robert, whom she likes, want to come over her house, and as a chinese-american young woman, she is a little ashamed of the chinese food. She also is ashamed by the type of house and environment she lives in.
Through the personal stories of his hair, love life, and behavior, Liu is able to show the effects of his assimilation. The second section deals with Liu’s struggles to conform to white stereotypes as an Asian American. With his personal anecdotes, he establishes himself as a more credible source to speak on the subject of assimilation. The second section uses narration to provide evidence about Liu’s definition of assimilation.
As Benjamin transition out of adolescent, he constantly struggles with the decision regarding his future and to find the best way of becoming a man. Ironically, it is his relationship with Mrs. Robinson that helps Benjamin transformation
In the short story, "Two Kinds" by Amy Tan, a Chinese mother and daughter are at odds with each other. The mother pushes her daughter to become a prodigy, while the daughter (like most children with immigrant parents) seeks to find herself in a world that demands her Americanization. This is the theme of the story, conflicting values. In a society that values individuality, the daughter sought to be an individual, while her mother demanded she do what was suggested. This is a conflict within itself. The daughter must deal with an internal and external conflict. Internally, she struggles to find herself. Externally, she struggles with the burden of failing to meet her mother’s expectations. Being a first-generation Asian American,
Wong feels that she needs to fit into the dominant culture from an early age. The reason for this is because society stresses the dominate culture, promotes the dominate culture and pressures immigrant children to fit in. Wong uses herself as an example of the tremendous pressure children of immigrants are under to fit in, which is a burden placed on them by society. The pressure is so great that many are embarrassed by their roots and their heritage. Wong experiences this burden, and this is what drives her to want to become the stereotypical All-American girl. She learns to hate her culture so much that she does not want anything to do with it and she wants a divorce from her ethnic roots, “Wong’s adolescent embarrassment of her ethnic
In the “Two Kinds” story the author illustrates the struggle between her American cultural identity, and her mother’s Chinese culture, as like the characters in the story. The author shows what is the struggle and the conflict that cultural differences creates. The author also uses symbolism, to address the conflicts between the characters in the story.
11). Due to his recent revelation to the reality of his identity, he encountered a series of plateaus during which he contemplated whether he should associate with the “colored” race or with the white race. He was now aware of his true identity: partially African-American and partially white. From this point onward, he endeavored to understand whether he is black or white. He did not know where he belonged in society. He contemplated his responsibility to his race versus his responsibility to himself. He tried to embrace life as a ““colored”” man at times, and other times he chose to pass as white. His life was full of contradictions and he could not decide which racial community to assimilate in. He eventually realized that his personal identity did not align with the pre-established racial boundaries.
Chang-Rae Lee’s Native Speaker expresses prominent themes of language and racial identity. Chang-Rae Lee focuses on the struggles that Asian Americans have to face and endure in American society. He illustrates and shows readers throughout the novel of what it really means to be native of America; that true nativity of a person does not simply entail the fact that they are from a certain place, but rather, the fluency of a language verifies one’s defense of where they are native. What is meant by possessing nativity of America would be one’s citizenship and legality of the country. Native Speaker suggests that if one looks different or has the slightest indication that one should have an accent, they will be viewed not as a native of
The focus of our group project is on Chinese Americans. We studied various aspects of their lives and the preservation of their culture in America. The Chinese American population is continually growing. In fact, in 1990, they were the largest group of Asians in the United States (Min 58). But living in America and adjusting to a new way of life is not easy. Many Chinese Americans have faced and continue to face much conflict between their Chinese and American identities. But many times, as they adapt to this new life, they are also able to preserve their Chinese culture and identity through various ways. We studied these things through the viewing of a movie called Joy Luck Club,
Throughout Shortcomings, Ben’s relationships tend to be defined by the fetishization of women and his own insecurities surrounding race. On pages 29 and 30, Miko accuses him of fawning over white girls. Blaming it on white media, Ben hastily acknowledges this bias and doesn’t try to dispute it; he takes it as a fact that can’t be changed because society has deemed the objectification of women to be normal (Figure 1). See this exemplified throughout the book in the illustrations; Tomine illustrates