Asians and Asian Americans

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Asian is a pan-ethnic term which describes people from the [wikipedia]Asian Continent, and island groups such as Japan, Taiwan, and the Philippines. In the recent past, Asians have been grouped together with Pacific Islanders in terms of demographic data, despite the fact that residents of Samoa and Mongolia have about as much in common with each other as they do with any other ethnic group.

  1. Asian American Groups/Resources
  2. Statistics
  3. Stereotypes
    1. Model Minority
    2. Perpetual Foreigner
  4. History
  5. Discrimination
  6. Links

Asian American Groups/Resources

Statistics

Stereotypes

"Asian" in English generally replaces the word "Oriental," which connotes European Imperialism in Asia and which is deemed offensive by many. This has with the idea of the Orient (literally "the East") being defined in relationship to Europe (the west, "Occident," etc), as well as suggesting a strange, exotic, and sexual nature that may not be positive.

Model Minority

The [wikipedia]Model Minority is a stereotype of Asian Americans as typically having higher success indicators than the general population. Indicators include higher income, greater family stability, more education, and lower crime rates.

[wikipedia]Effects of the stereotype

Perpetual Foreigner

Applied to Asian Americans, the "perpetual foreigner" paradigm is used to describe how the dominant American would see Asians as a novel group having only immigrated to the continental U.S. within recent years. "Recent" simply means enough to be regarded as foreigners and not being a member of American society.

Personal examples include subtle verbal cues such as being asked "How long have you been here?" or "Where are you from," and following up by asking more questions such as "No, I mean, what country are you from?" or [WWW]"Where are you really from?" A particularly poignant example is noting that "you speak English so well" to a native-born Asian American.

This paradigm is why many Asian Americans hold their titles of "American" with intense zeal. A European American does not go through the trouble of attaching a prefix to their identity. This dual identity is especially important in many 2nd generation Asian Americans whose parents are refugees from the Vietnam War. Their parents are markedly "Asian" in that they have assimilated very little mainstream American culture, but being born in America, 2nd generation children confront experiences everyday involving their dual identities of Asian and American. Denying one but promoting the other is just another manifestation of the "perpetual foreigner" mindset.

History

Asian immigrants played an active role in the early years of California. The mighty transcontinental railway, built in part by these hard workers, reached Davis in 1868, connecting the local farmlands to the rest of the country.

The majority of early Asian settlers were of Chinese descent. After the railroad was built, several "Chinese laundries" opened up in Davisville. Laundry work was one of the very few career options available to the ethnic minority. In the early 1900s, Chinese and Chinese Americans made up about 5% of the town's population. Only one laundry facility remained by 1904; the building doubled as a hiring agency that distributed workers throughout local ranches; many of these workers were from San Francisco, and they traveled to Davisville upon hearing of a demand for labor. A Chinese Saloon existed for a short time after 1900 in a building near the laundry.

During World War II, Davis actively supported the Japanese Internment by a city council vote. The vote was not without detractors, including Fred T. Korematsu. Many years later in 2005, the council recognized his efforts fighting the World War II Japanese internment and playing a part in the redress movement by naming the Fred T. Korematsu Elementary School after him.

Local professor Darrell Hamamoto garnered national attention for his two movies Skin on Skin and Yellowcaust: A Patriot Act. They were both pornographic works that focused on issues that Asians face in the United States.

Discrimination

Police discrimination? Please contribute: Police Misconduct Stories. If the police assisted you in the city of Davis please contribute here: Police Appreciation Stories.

Links

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2006-10-16 11:33:31   You seem to think that this is Wikipedia. Your efforts would be better exerted there. It would really suck if DavisWiki turned into some crappier version of Wikipedia. This page is what all of DavisWiki would look like if that happened. —WilliamLewis

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