A "comprehensive...fascinating" (The New York Times Book Review) history of Asian Americans and their role in American life, by one of the nation's preeminent scholars on the subject.In the past fifty years, Asian Americans have helped change the face of America and are now the fastest growing group in the United States. But much of their long history has been forgotten. "In her sweeping, powerful new book, Erika Lee considers the rich, complicated, and sometimes invisible histories of Asians in the United States" (Huffington Post). The Making of Asian America shows how generations of Asian immigrants and their American-born descendants have made and remade Asian American life, from sailors who came on the first trans-Pacific ships in the 1500 to the Japanese Americans incarcerated during World War II. Over the past fifty years, a new Asian America has emerged out of community activism and the arrival of new immigrants and refugees. No longer a "despised minority," Asian Americans are now held up as America's "model minorities" in ways that reveal the complicated role that race still plays in the United States. Published fifty years after the passage of the United States' Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965, these "powerful Asian American stories...are inspiring, and Lee herself does them justice in a book that is long overdue" (Los Angeles Times). But more than that, The Making of Asian America is an "epic and eye-opening" (Minneapolis Star-Tribune) new way of understanding America itself, its complicated histories of race and immigration, and its place in the world today.
"An elaborate story of love and self-discovery . . . Huang's writing is wry and zippy; he regards the world with an understanding of its absurdities and injustices and with a willingness to be surprised."--Jon Caramanica, The New York Times "Huang is determined to tease out the subtle and not-so-subtle ways in which Asian-Americans give up parts of themselves in order to move forward. . . . Fortunately for us, he's not afraid to speak up about it."--The New Yorker "Huang connects in Chengdu the same way he assimilated in America--through food, hip-hop and a never-ending authenticity, which readers experience through his hilarious writing voice and style."--New York Daily News
"Bawdy and frequently hilarious . . . a surprisingly sophisticated memoir about race and assimilation in America . . . as much James Baldwin and Jay-Z as Amy Tan . . . rowdy and] vital . . . It's a book about fitting in by not fitting in at all."--Dwight Garner, The New York Times
NATIONAL BESTSELLER - NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY KIRKUS REVIEWS Assimilating ain't easy. Eddie Huang was raised by a wild family of FOB ("fresh off the boat") immigrants--his father a cocksure restaurateur with a dark past back in Taiwan, his mother a fierce protector and constant threat. Young Eddie tried his hand at everything mainstream America threw his way, from white Jesus to macaroni and cheese, but finally found his home as leader of a rainbow coalition of lost boys up to no good: skate punks, dealers, hip-hop junkies, and sneaker freaks. This is the story of a Chinese-American kid in a could-be-anywhere cul-de-sac blazing his way through America's deviant subcultures, trying to find himself, ten thousand miles from his legacy and anchored only by his conflicted love for his family and his passion for food. Funny, moving, and stylistically inventive, Fresh Off the Boat is more than a radical reimagining of the immigrant memoir--it's the exhilarating story of every American outsider who finds his destiny in the margins. Praise for Fresh Off the Boat "Brash and funny . . . outrageous, courageous, moving, ironic and true."--New York Times Book Review "Mercilessly funny and provocative, Fresh Off the Boat is also a serious piece of work. Eddie Huang is hunting nothing less than Big Game here. He does everything with style."--Anthony Bourdain
"Uproariously funny . . . emotionally honest."--Chicago Tribune
"Huang is a fearless raconteur. His] writing is at once hilarious and provocative; his incisive wit pulls through like a perfect plate of dan dan noodles."--Interview
"Although writing a memoir is an audacious act for a thirty-year-old, it is not nearly as audacious as some of the things Huang did and survived even earlier. . . . Whatever he ends up doing, you can be sure it won't look or sound like anything that's come before. A single, kinetic passage from Fresh Off the Boat . . . is all you need to get that straight."--Bookforum
After enduring years of hunger, deprivation, and devastating loss at the hands of the Khmer Rouge, ten-year-old Loung Ung became the "lucky child," the sibling chosen to accompany her eldest brother to America while her one surviving sister and two brothers remained behind. In this poignant and elegiac memoir, Loung recalls her assimilation into an unfamiliar new culture while struggling to overcome dogged memories of violence and the deep scars of war. In alternating chapters, she gives voice to Chou, the beloved older sister whose life in war-torn Cambodia so easily could have been hers. Highlighting the harsh realities of chance and circumstance in times of war as well as in times of peace, Lucky Child is ultimately a testament to the resilience of the human spirit and to the salvaging strength of family bonds.
In Brotherhood, Deepak and Sanjiv Chopra reveal the story of their personal struggles and triumphs as doctors, immigrants, and brothers. They were born in the ferment of liberated India after 1947, as an age-old culture was reinventing its future. For the young, this meant looking to the West.The Chopra brothers were among the most eager and ambitious of the new generation. In the 1970s, they each emigrated to the United States to make a new life. Both faced tough obstacles: While Deepak encountered resistance from Western-trained doctors over the mind-body connection, Sanjiv struggled to reconcile the beliefs of his birthplace with those of his new home. Eventually, each brother became convinced that America was the right place to build a life, and the Chopras went on to great achievements--Deepak as a global spiritual teacher and best-selling author, Sanjiv as a world-renowned medical expert and professor at Harvard Medical School. Brotherhood will fascinate and inspire those who still believe in America's capacity to foster achievement and reward hard work.
In Turning Japanese, poet David Mura chronicled a year in Japan in which his sense of identity as a Japanese American was transformed. In Where the Body Meets Memory, Mura focuses on his experience growing up Japanese American in a country which interned both his parents during World War II, simply because of their race. Interweaving his own experience with that of his family and of other sansei-third generation Japanese Americans-Mura reveals how being a "model minority" has resulted in a loss of heritage and wholeness for generations of Japanese Americans.In vivid and searingly honest prose, Mura goes on to suggest how the shame of internment affected his sense of sexuality, leading him to face troubling questions about desire and race: an interracial marriage, compulsive adultery, and an addiction to pornography which equates beauty with whiteness. Using his own experience as a measure of racial and sexual grief, Mura illustrates how the connections between race and desire are rarely discussed, how certain taboos continue to haunt this country's understanding of itself. Ultimately, Mura faces the most difficult legacy of miscegenation: raising children in a world which refuses to recognize and honor its racial diversity. Intimate and lyrically stunning, Where the Body Meets Memory is a personal journey out of the self and into America's racial and sexual psyche.
This book comes at a critical time in the history of South Asians in North America. As the number of South Asian immigrants increases in the United. States and Canada, a familiar tension has been the immigrant conflict between home as a physical site in North America and home as an emotional concept tied to the ancestral country, and the second generation's questioning of both notions. This anthology critically explores this familiar tension and the concept of "home". It focuses on the transformative experiences that lead individuals to declare or reject new forms of belonging in North America. Setting up "home" may require contesting existing roles, inventing hybrid identities, or seeking social and political change. The anthology challenges undifferentiated, stereotypical images of South Asians in North America, portraying instead the subtleties of their varied, sometimes invisible experiences. It includes fiction, poetry, essays, and photography.
The Chinese in turn-of-the-last-century New York were mostly immigrant peasants and shopkeepers who worked as laundrymen, cigar makers, and domestics. They gravitated to lower Manhattan and lived as Chinese an existence as possible, their few diversions--gambling, opium, and prostitution--available but, sadly, illegal. It didn't take long before one resourceful merchant saw a golden opportunity to feather his nest by positioning himself squarely between the vice dens and the police charged with shutting them down.
Tong Wars is historical true crime set against the perfect landscape: Tammany-era New York City. Representatives of rival tongs (secret societies) corner the various markets of sin using admirably creative strategies. The city government was already corrupt from top to bottom, so once one tong began taxing the gambling dens and paying off the authorities, a rival, jealously eyeing its lucrative franchise, co-opted a local reformist group to help eliminate it. Pretty soon Chinese were slaughtering one another in the streets, inaugurating a succession of wars that raged for the next thirty years.
Scott D. Seligman's account roars through three decades of turmoil, with characters ranging from gangsters and drug lords to reformers and do-gooders to judges, prosecutors, cops, and pols of every stripe and color. A true story set in Prohibition-era Manhattan a generation after Gangs of New York, but fought on the very same turf.
An award-winning writer takes a groundbreaking look at the experience and psyche of the Asian American male.Alex Tizon landed in an America that saw Asian women as sexy and Asian men as sexless. Immigrating from the Philippines as a young boy, everything he saw and heard taught him to be ashamed of his face, his skin color, his height. His fierce and funny observations of sex and the Asian American male include his own quest for love during college in the 1980s, a tortured tutorial on stereotypes that still make it hard for Asian men to get the girl. Tizon writes: "I had to educate myself on my own worth. It was a sloppy, piecemeal education, but I had to do it because no one else was going to do it for me." And then, a transformation. First, Tizon's growing understanding that shame is universal: that his own just happened to be about race. Next, seismic cultural changes - from Jerry Yang's phenomenal success with Yahoo Inc., to actor Ken Watanabe's emergence in Hollywood blockbusters, to Jeremy Lin's meteoric NBA rise. Finally, Tizon's deeply original, taboo-bending investigation turns outward, tracking the unheard stories of young Asian men today, in a landscape still complex but much changed for the Asian American man.