Asian American Lit (XL ES 372)

classic Asian American texts (including excerpts from Making Waves. An Anthology Of Writings By And About Asian American
; Our Feet Walk The Sky: Women Of The South Asian
; Charlie Chan Is Dead Ii); also, Carlos
Bulosan, America Is In The Heart (selection); Karen Tei
Yamashita, Tropic Of Orange (hypertextual
narrative); Sesshu Foster, Atomik Aztex
(science fiction); Theresa Cha, Dictee
(experimental fiction); Shaun Tan, The
(graphic novel); Joy Kogawa, Obasan; Maxine Hong Kingston, Woman Warrior; Milton Murayama, All I Asking For Is My Body; Quang Bao
and Yanagihara, Take Out: Queer Writing
From Asian Pacific America
(selection); Barbara Jane Reyes, Poeta En San Francisco (poetry); Maya
Lin, What Is Missing (cyberspace); “LIN-SANITY”
(media representations of Jeremy Lin); Chan
Is Missing
(film). Books ordered through UHM Bookstore. Films viewed at
Sinclair, Wong A/V.


This course introduces students to some of
the most creative writers, filmmakers and artists on Asian America from the end
of the 19th century to today.  Non-majors are welcome. The “reading list”
consists of prose, poetry, graphic novels, films, photography, and websites.
The main goal would be to read, discuss and write (this is a writing intensive
class) about some excellent literature and art. This goal includes examining some
of the cultural, economic, and political forces to which these talented and
daring artists were speaking to, and in many ways, contesting and seeking to
change. The readings offer complex insights into what constitutes Asian America
and America. Many of these cultural texts question and undercut limiting
definitions of both labels, “Asian” and “America”.   The course will delve into crucial events
such as the turbulent 1960’s, the Civil Rights Movement and concepts such as immigration,
settler, diaspora, transnationalism, borders, hybridity, ethnicity, race,
gender, ideas that are central to a more complete appreciation of not just
Asian American cultural production (such as novels and films) but also many
other contemporary American literatures and cultural and social concerns.

nationalities that initially entered the United States from Asia were the
Chinese, Japanese, Indians, Koreans, and Filipinos. Since 1965 (when U.S.
immigration rules designed to keep out certain “races” were fully repealed), the
new “Asian” immigration included the Hmong, Laotians, Vietnamese, Chinese from
Taiwan, Hong Kong, China, and so on—today, there are an estimated 53 “Asian”
nationalities or ethnic peoples in North America. Americans of Asian heritage
comprise a variety of religions, political beliefs, class, sexual orientation,
cultural customs and traditions. This course maps the differences as well as
the similarities among these groups called Asian Americans. So, the class will examine:

1) common concerns as well as the diversity found in Asian American
writing; 2) the ways that “local” literature by Hawai’i writers of Asian
descent intersect with and depart from Asian American writing; 3) the ways that
Asian American literature and identity revise, complement and otherwise engage
with various “Americas”; 4) some of the important issues and goals for Asian
Americans in the next 50 years

WRITING REQUIREMENTS: (Writing Intensive class) include
but may not be limited to: A one-page response paper (single-spaced assigned every
three weeks); one essay (8-pages minimum, double-spaced); oral presentation
(5-10 minutes) and a written summary of your presentation, and an essay final
exam (take home).