For the Lisa Lowe’s Heterogeneity, Hybridity, and Multiplicity: Asian American Differences and Wanni Anderson and Robert G. Lee’s Asian American Displacements readings, it brought to mind an episode of Cold Case which embodied several of the elements we spoke about in class (online stream here: Cold Case Season 02 Episode 05).
In this episode, there are brief references to what Lisa Lowe refers to as the idea of a homogeneous Asian American population and the different kinds of displacements experienced by Asians. For the first example, Brad Atwater (the victim’s boss) incorrectly refers to Channary Dhiet (the murdered wife) as ‘Miss Saigon’ when in fact, the Dhiets are Cambodian. This plays into the misconception that Asians are all one population. For the second example, we look at Sen and Channary Dhiet (the murdered couple) who are physically, culturally, and psychologically displaced as a result of being Cambodian refugees. They are also socio-economically displaced rather than intellectually displaced as they were members of the royal family in Cambodia and in America they were illegal immigrants who ended up taking the identities of fellow immigrants to stay alive.
These brief references to several elements that have been mentioned in class display how vulnerable (Asian) immigrant populations are after they come to America. This episode reveals the darker possibilities of displacement and the susceptibility that displaced immigrants encounter.