By Mimi Thi Nguyen
This interdisciplinary assortment brings jointly members operating in Asian American experiences, English, anthropology, sociology, and paintings historical past. they give thought to problems with cultural authenticity raised by way of Asian American participation in hip hop and jazz, the emergence of an orientalist “Indo-chic” in U.S. formative years tradition, and the circulate of Vietnamese track type indicates. They study the connection among chinese language eating places and American tradition, problems with sexuality and race dropped at the fore within the video functionality paintings of a Bruce Lee–channeling drag king, and immigrant tv audience’ dismayed reactions to a chinese language American chef who's “not chinese language enough.” The essays in Alien Encounters exhibit the significance of scholarly engagement with pop culture. Taking pop culture heavily finds how humans think and show their affective relationships to heritage, identification, and belonging.
Contributors. Wendy Hui Kyong Chun, Kevin Fellezs, Vernadette Vicuña Gonzalez, Joan Kee, Nhi T. Lieu, Sunaina Maira, Martin F. Manalansan IV, Mimi Thi Nguyen, Robyn Magalit Rodriguez, Sukhdev Sandhu, Christopher A. Shinn, Indigo Som, Thuy Linh Nguyen Tu, Oliver Wang
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Extra info for Alien Encounters: Popular Culture in Asian America
In choosing the name Alien Encounters, we propose that popular culture holds out some very familiar and tired narratives but also new and exciting promises. With this collection, we hope to show that Asian Americans’ meeting with the popular has been, and continues to be, one of fascination and worry—an experience of a√ective intensity and political complexity, of expressive pleasure and deep ambivalence, that in any case has irrevocably transformed our imaginations. The authors gathered here take the threat and promise of popular culture seriously.
Nonblack rappers, especially Asian Americans, face a dilemma since their racial di√erence does not meet the standard of black authenticity held by rap fans and music executives alike. This challenge poses a paradox to Asian American artists. There are few Asian American rappers in the mainstream because most record labels are wary of signing them out of concern for their commercial viability. However, Rapping and Repping Asian 37 Asian American artists are unlikely to attain commercial viability until more record labels are willing to put their marketing and promotions resources behind them.
Yet a diasporic framework can often diminish the extent to which Asian Americans have always had a fairly complicated relationship with the transnational. On the one hand, historical Asian communities in the Americas have consistently maintained ties to their homelands through modes of communication, travel, business relationships, and familial remittance, among others. In other words, they have always practiced a form of transnationalism. On the other hand, they have also been situated as always and necessarily foreign, as indistinct from or perpetually tied to their ‘‘native homelands,’’ as evidenced during World War II with the Japanese American internment, the Wen Ho Lee Introduction 21 spy scandal, and the federal shift that transferred immigration control—and the detention of thousands of Arab and Asian persons—to the Department of Homeland Security after 9/11.
Alien Encounters: Popular Culture in Asian America by Mimi Thi Nguyen