Event Title

Session 3A: Edward Soja's Spatial Theory in Asian American Literature: Constructing Space in the Margins to Better Explore the Multiplicity of Gender

Session Number

Session 3A: 2nd Presentation

Advisor(s)

Mark Chiang, University of Illinois at Chicago

Location

Room A147

Start Date

28-4-2017 1:15 PM

End Date

28-4-2017 2:30 PM

Abstract

While traditional modernist cultural politics can essentialize identities to the point of political divisiveness instead of working towards a radical conceptualization of agency, action, and identity, we can apply Soja's spatial theory and bell hooks's analysis on occupying the margins to analyze the spaces that Asian American women occupy in three texts: Fifth Chinese Daughter by Jade Snow Wong, The Woman Warrior by Maxine Hong Kingston, and finally Typical American by Gish Jen. In particular, we look at how characters choosing to move towards the periphery (of spaces or social constructs) can disengage, exaggerate and disassociate from conventional expectations, or begin to play with the blurry line between body and space in order to protect themselves from the gendered violence inflicted on them in the dining room, as well as the workspace/home life.

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Apr 28th, 1:15 PM Apr 28th, 2:30 PM

Session 3A: Edward Soja's Spatial Theory in Asian American Literature: Constructing Space in the Margins to Better Explore the Multiplicity of Gender

Room A147

While traditional modernist cultural politics can essentialize identities to the point of political divisiveness instead of working towards a radical conceptualization of agency, action, and identity, we can apply Soja's spatial theory and bell hooks's analysis on occupying the margins to analyze the spaces that Asian American women occupy in three texts: Fifth Chinese Daughter by Jade Snow Wong, The Woman Warrior by Maxine Hong Kingston, and finally Typical American by Gish Jen. In particular, we look at how characters choosing to move towards the periphery (of spaces or social constructs) can disengage, exaggerate and disassociate from conventional expectations, or begin to play with the blurry line between body and space in order to protect themselves from the gendered violence inflicted on them in the dining room, as well as the workspace/home life.