Researcher – July 8th Readings

I think this TED talk shows how space and mobilization have helped her not only escape and reach freedom but shaped her struggle. She has found ‘safe spaces’ in her quest for freedom in China and South Korea, but they are not completely without danger. Her movement between these safe spaces define a refugee network […]

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Primary Reader – July 1st Readings

Something I found interesting in Junaid Rana’s piece Racial Panic, Islamic Peril, and Terror was how the ‘moral panic’ that spread through America in the aftermath of Sept. 11th was warped and transformed into a ‘racial panic’ even though Muslim isn’t a race, it’s a religion. Something else I also found odd was how it […]

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Researcher – June 26th Readings

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 […]

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Primary Reader – June 19th Readings

In Lisa Lowe’s Immigration, Citizenship, Racialization I thought it was interesting what Atitaya pointed out, that Lowe was equating culture to citizenship. It seemed like though that was what Lowe was intending, it wasn’t what was happening in America. Now matter how much of American culture an immigrant learns or absorbs, they are still defined […]

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Primary Reader – Week 2 readings

In Natalia Molina’s Fit to be Citizens? we see how racialization plays a role in public health and policies, immigration and public perception. In Los Angeles, officials used public health to further racial divides and perpetuate racial stereotypes; this racialization was also have been exacerbated by the conditions of a growing city. In Omi and […]

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On "Primary Reader 7/3"

Between Ryan and Trevor's summation of Parrenas' article, there's a bit of a question I have coming up surrounding reproductive labor: Is it a consequence of socio-economic class stratification or is it more due to a cultural difference instead? If it is a consequence of socio-economic class difference, then does race have an effect on whether reproductive labor is used in the household? If it is not due to socio-economic class differences and more due to cultural differences, then how does that affect the way we see reproductive labor? I like to think that reproductive labor is a consequence of these various factors playing off each other, a push and pull interrelationship. The first factor being socio-economic status, we understand that wealthy people tend to take advantage of their wealth to foist the reproductive labor responsibility onto their hired help. But it isn't only the wealthy who do so. Babysitters can also be considered reproductive labor, if only a pale comparison of such, and even those in the lower-income brackets use a different type of reproductive labor: their support system. Lower income families may not pay for the reproductive labor they use because they tend to turn towards their support system for these needs: usually family or close friends who do not mind doing the service for free. The second factor that affects reproductive labor is race. Reproductive labor tends to be minority women, but those who pay for reproductive labor tend to be rich white women/families. Going down the socio-economic ladder, the percentages shift with the type of reproductive labor: babysitters primarily used by middle-income white and American-assimilated minorities while support systems are used by those with low-income or those who value a support system as part of their culture, the third factor. Culture appears similar but is markedly different from race: while one may be of a particular race, they may be of a completely different culture. Many cultures emphasize familial bonds - it appears American culture values familial bonds with certain lifestyles or certain financial statuses (bringing us back to the first factor). When a family is considered rich, the expectations for the kind of lifestyle the members lead and have are dictated by the money they have. Likewise, culture tends to dictate the kind of reproductive labor one uses. As the culture adopted by the individual approaches American culture more and more, we can see more and more how they also adopt the standards American culture has for reproductive labor.

On "Primary Reader 6/24"

I think that the idea of Asians being a model minority really affects the way that other minorities - not just Asians - are treated and it's still relevant today. One example of such is the controversial Stop-and-Frisk program by the NYPD. This procedure involves police officers stopping people they believe are acting suspicious (relating to criminal activity or property). The program is gender and race-neutral, but the implementation of the program appears to have been skewed by racial profiling. A majority of the people stopped by police officers are of African-American or Latino descent, with a markedly smaller percentage of white or other minorities being stopped. This plays into the model minority myth by unofficially reinforcing the idea of a 'model minority', particularly Asians. People believe in the model minority myth and as a result Asians aren't subject to the same racial treatment as other minorities.

On "Primary Reader for 6/12"

One of the things that struck me from Ono and Pham's piece about Asian Americans in media was how stereotyped and underrepresented Asians and Asian Americans are in the media. To take the example from the piece, 'Fast and Furious', not only is the villain an Asian American (a subtle nod to Yellow Peril and maybe a representation of the rivalry in the auto industry between American made cars and foreign cars) but the villain is a gangster. Again in 'Fast ad Furious: Tokyo Drift' the villain is an Asian American mobster. Since the advent of media in the United States, Asians and Asian Americans have been underrepresented both in roles and in casting. One such example is M. Night Shyamalan's 'The Last Airbender': a movie based off a popular children's cartoon series. The series was based off many Asian influences and the casting drew criticism for the dichotomous depiction between the 'good guys' and the 'bad guys' (notably because most of the 'good guys' were Caucasian and the 'bad guys' were a mix of darker-skinned ethnicities that could be construed as Arab or Indian, which may have been influenced by Sept. 11) and also because the casting specifically looked for Caucasians rather than Asians or Asian Americans. Ono and Pham took historical examples of Yellow Peril and Asian Americans in the media which have evolved and still impact the media industry today.