Saving Face: The Emotional Costs of the Asian Immigrant Myth

Friday Evening Lecture Series

Please join us for a talk on, Saving Face: The Emotional Costs of the Asian Immigrant Myth, on Friday, April 1, 2016, from 6pm to 8pm, at the CUNY Graduate Center, 365 Fifth Avenue, 6th Floor, Room 6304.01, Manhattan. This talk is free and open to the general public, and is co-sponsored by the CUNY Graduate Center – Immigrant Seminar Series.

Tiger Mom. Asian patriarchy. Model minority children. Generation gap. The mainstream discourse has drawn on many generic concepts to describe the prototypical Asian family, which have given rise to two versions of the Asian immigrant family myth. The first celebrates Asian families for upholding the traditional heteronormative ideology of the “normal (white) American family” based on a hard-working male breadwinner and a devoted wife/ mother who raises obedient children. The other demonizes Asian families around these very same cultural values by highlighting the dangers of excessive parenting, oppressive hierarchies, and emotionless pragmatism in Asian cultures. In her new book Saving Face, Angie Chung shatters these one-dimensional portrayals of Asian families and reveals the emotional complexities of family relations in a changing economy through the eyes of adult-age Korean and Chinese Americans.

Based on the moving narratives of daughters and sons of immigrant families, Chung explores how the family roles American-born children assume in adaptation to their specific family circumstances have informed the way they view ethnicity and practice culture as adults. Although they know little about their parents’ lives, the author reveals how Korean and Chinese Americans assemble fragments of their childhood memories, kin-scripted narratives, and racial myths to make sense of their family experiences. Chung argues that this process of managing their feelings helps them to ease the emotional and economic strains of immigrant family life and to rediscover love and empathy through new modes of communication and caregiving. However, the book ultimately finds that these adaptive strategies come at a considerable social and psychological cost that do less to reconcile the racial contradictions and economic strains that minority immigrant families face today.

Angie Y. Chung is an Associate Professor of Sociology at SUNY Albany. Dr. Chung has served as visiting professor at Yonsei and Korea University and is currently the 2016 CUNY Thomas Tam Visiting Professor at the CUNY Graduate Center. Her areas of expertise include immigration and the second generation, community and urban sociology, gender and family, race and ethnicity, Asian American studies, and qualitative methods. She is currently working on an NSF-funded research project on the politics of economic growth and urban redevelopment in Koreatown and Monterey Park, Los Angeles.

To RSVP for this talk, please visit www.aaari.info/16-04-01Chung.htm. Please be prepared to present proper identification when entering the building lobby.

If you are unable to attend the talk, streaming video and audio podcast will be available online the following week.

Thanks to CUNY AAARI for sharing this announcement.

Navigating Model Minority Stereotypes: Asian Indian Youth in South Asian Diaspora

Please join us for a talk on, Navigating Model Minority Stereotypes: Asian Indian Youth in South Asian Diaspora, by Rupam Saran, on Friday, March 11, 2016, from 6pm to 8pm, at 25 West 43rd Street, 10th Floor, Room 1000, between 5th & 6th Avenues, Manhattan. This talk is free and open to the general public.

Though Asian Indians are typically thought of as a “model minority”, not much is known about the school experiences of their children. Positive stereotyping of these immigrants and their children often masks educational needs and issues, creates class divides within the Indian-American community, and triggers stress for many Asian Indian students. In her new book, Prof. Rupam Saran examines second generation (America-born) and 1.5 generation (foreign-born) Asian Indians as they try to balance peer culture, home life and academics. It explores how, through the acculturation process, these children either take advantage of this positive stereotype or refute their stereotyped ethnic image and move to downward mobility.

Focusing on migrant experiences of the Indian diasporas in the United States, this volume brings attention to highly motivated Asian Indian students who are overlooked because of their cultural dispositions and outlooks on schooling, and those students who are more likely to underachieve. Prof. Saran highlights the assimilation of Asian Indian students in mainstream society and their understandings of Americanization, social inequality, diversity and multiculturalism.

Rupam Saran is an Associate Professor of Education at ¬†Medgar Evers College/CUNY. Dr. Saran’s book with co-author Dr. Rosalina Diaz, Beyond Stereotype: Minority children of immigrants in urban schools, analyzes the effect of stereotyping on the school experiences of children of new immigrants. Recent journal publications include articles in Journal of Urban Learning, Teaching, and Research, In the South Asian Diaspora, The Hispanic Educational Technology Services (HETS) Online Journal, and The Anthropologist.

To RSVP for this talk, please visit www.aaari.info/16-03-11Saran.htm. Please be prepared to present proper identification when entering the building lobby.

If you are unable to attend the talk, it will be live webcasted on our website, www.aaari.info,  beginning 6:15PM EST, and also available the following week as streaming video and audio podcast. See you on Friday!

Friday Evening Lecture Series

AAARI’s Friday Evening Lecture Series is back for the Spring 2016 semester! Please join us for a talk on, Making a Global Immigrant Neighborhood: Brooklyn’s Sunset Park, by Tarry Hum, on Friday, March 4, 2016, from 6pm to 8pm, at 25 West 43rd Street, 10th Floor, Room 1000, between 5th & 6th Avenues, Manhattan. This talk is free and open to the general public.

Based on more than a decade of research, Making a Global Immigrant Neighborhood charts the evolution of Sunset Park-with a densely concentrated working-poor and racially diverse immigrant population-from the late 1960s to its current status as one of New York City’s most vibrant neighborhoods. Author and professor, Tarry Hum, will discuss how processes of globalization, such as shifts in low-wage labor markets and immigration patterns, shaped the neighborhood. She explains why Sunset Park’s future now depends on Asian and Latino immigrant collaborations in advancing common interests in community building, civic engagement, entrepreneurialism, and sustainability planning. She shows, too, how residents’ responses to urban development policies and projects and the capital represented by local institutions and banks foster community activism.

Tarry Hum is Professor of Urban Studies at Queens College/CUNY, and serves on the Doctoral Faculty at the CUNY Graduate Center’s Environmental Psychology program. Prof. Hum’s research areas focus broadly on immigration, community economic development, and urban planning. She has researched and published papers on the socioeconomic processes and outcomes of immigrant incorporation in urban labor markets, related issues of immigrant settlement and neighborhood change, and the consequences for urban inequality, race and ethnic relations, political representation, and community definition and development.

To RSVP for this talk, please visit www.aaari.info/16-03-04Hum.htm. Please be prepared to present proper identification when entering the building lobby.

If you are unable to attend the talk, it will be live webcasted on our website, www.aaari.info, beginning 6:15PM EST, and also available the following week as streaming video and audio podcast. See you on Friday!