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‘Cheap, On Sale, American Dream’: Contemporary Asian American Women Writers' Responses to American Success Mythologies

‘Cheap, On Sale, American Dream’: Contemporary Asian American Women Writers' Responses to American Success Mythologies

Chapter:
(p.105) Chapter 6 ‘Cheap, On Sale, American Dream’: Contemporary Asian American Women Writers' Responses to American Success Mythologies
Source:
American Mythologies
Author(s):
Phillipa Kafka
Publisher:
Liverpool University Press
DOI:10.5949/liverpool/9780853237365.003.0007

This chapter draws upon Asian American fiction to explore the concept of syncresis. It discusses authors such as M. Evelina Galang (Her Wild American Self), R. A. Sasaki (The Loom and Other Stories), Gish Jen (Typical American), and Wang Ping (American Visa), who take as their subject matter the generational and cross-cultural differences found in immigrant families from Chinese, Japanese, and Filipina ancestry. The characters in these stories face not only the prejudices and stereotypes typically encountered by first-through third-generation Asian Americans, but also the problems of assimilation into mainstream US society, with the losses from their own ethnic inheritance weighted against the gains from acknowledging their ‘double consciousness’.

Keywords:   Asian American fiction, syncresis, cross-cultural differences, immigrant families, assimilation

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