In Lisa Lowe’s piece, I thought her ideas on culture equating to citizenship were interesting because it is not necessarily what it is today. Citizenship in the early twentieth century seemed to be based on how well someone was integrated or assimilated into American culture, so it was affected by societal norms and pressures. I liked the anecdote in the beginning about the Chinese American woman designing the memorial for U.S. Vietnam veterans. I thought it was surprising how the veterans did not feel “represented” by her design, and how this incident led to inevitable greater racial tension. I liked how Lowe pointed out that Asian Americans have been “subject to” and “subjects of” the immigration debacle; they’ve been a crucial center piece of controversy while having to live through the struggle of inequality. Also Lowe’s points about the role of the state and its lack of carrying out the “organization and interpretation of race” (10) was provoking.
Personally, I preferred Leti Volpp’s piece because it was better organized and easier to read. Her central idea of it being necessary to be able to access all four forms of citizenship was interesting. The section on citizenship as legal status reinforced the thought of Asian Americans as being inferior to other racial group and lacking political power. Also, I thought it was ridiculous how the ownership of property was part of someone being a good citizen but Asian American were ineligible of owning property so they weren’t even given a chance to become good citizens. In this reading, media was important because it provided the public with an image of Asian America; however, the image portrayed hurt the positive image that was being strived. But as Volpp later states, the idea of Asian Americans changed from “yellow peril” to “model minority”, and I thought that was interesting too.