Alien Encounters: Popular Culture in Asian America by Mimi Thi Nguyen

By Mimi Thi Nguyen

Alien Encounters showcases leading edge instructions in Asian American cultural reviews. In essays exploring issues starting from pulp fiction to multimedia artwork to import-car subcultures, members learn Asian americans’ interactions with pop culture as either creators and shoppers. Written by way of a brand new iteration of cultural critics, those essays mirror post-1965 Asian the USA; the individuals pay nuanced cognizance to problems with gender, sexuality, transnationality, and citizenship, they usually unabashedly get pleasure from pop culture.

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 move of Vietnamese song style indicates. They research the connection among chinese language eating places and American tradition, problems with sexuality and race delivered to 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 show the significance of scholarly engagement with pop culture. Taking pop culture heavily finds how humans think and exhibit their affective relationships to background, id, 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 resources for Alien Encounters: Popular Culture in Asian America

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In 2005, the International Channel became the ‘‘all Asian all the time’’ azn Channel—a spelling of Asian that emerged from Asian youth digital subcultures—which features campy redubbed 1970s martial arts films, anime serials, contemporary short films and ‘‘lifestyle’’ programs stocked with Asian American actors and comedians. The implications of the International Channel’s decision to o√er exclusively Asian content are wide ranging and significant, especially in terms of the reach of Asian transnationalism as culture and capital.

They are, in other words, bounded by the conditions of these particular places for, unlike the goods and images that these restaurants sell, their bodies are far less mobile. ’’ Many South Asian American films, he suggests, jettison treatments of local places and textures in ways that empty their images and narratives of any on-theground political force. Ironically, he finds in such sentimental mainstream films as The Guru (2002)—a multinationally produced, Indian musical comedy featuring a young Indian dancer who finds himself catering to the ‘‘spiritual’’ and sexual needs of New York’s upper crust—a more vivid representation of urban immigrant life and placefulness.

While I cover a span of approximately fifteen years, my intent is not to present a traditional, narrative history of Asian American rappers. Instead, I historicize one particular aspect—how they position a politics of racial identity within their music. The essay examines if, how, why, and to what ends Asian American rappers deploy ethnic and racial identities in their songs. The choice to express these identities is an individual one, but I argue that there have also been larger trends in the way Asian American rappers choose to deal with race in their marketing and music.

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