Lecture 002


  1. Globalization
  2. White Narrative become Non-Universal

Bad studies

Marlon Fuentes

Phillippine-born photographer, filmmaker, conceptual artist in California. (Born in Manila)

"internal schizoidness of carrying he cultural baggage of east and West"


"Tongue": mimicking "Stiches": silver print of pig, for ritual objects with magical culture "Fuentes": imaginary ethnographic interview "Bontoc Eulogy": film, documentary, himself and grandfather, tribal warrior.

st.louis fair: contrast U.S. technology with primitives (ethnographic showcase 18s-1930)

Allan deSouza

Photographer, installation artist

Britain Portugal rule in Kenya, colonial and post colonial period.

Goa reabsorbed into India. Deportation of Asian, deSouza family moved to England.

In Africa, Asian are targeted by African after colonization. Asian ethnicity are determined by belonging than birth

Coconut Chutney Series: black outside, white inside

"Taj & Company": orientalism is a selling point in Western consumers.

National Identity

"Irrawaddy Woman"

"Look Mama, a Caucasian": western gaze in picture, but it is Indian gaze back.


Vietnamese-born photographer Pipo Ngugen-duy. Lived in capital before colonization from French. Wars, communists swiped. Planned to study in Paris, moved to Minisoda, and to New York. Worked in fashion and photography.

Influenced by: Mao suit by Tseng Kwong Chi.

The assimilation series:

AnOther Western Series: Asian migration

AnOther Expedition: travel to France, explore Vietnam colonialism

Asian Cowboys?

Tomie Arai

Post-war generation 3rd generation Japanese American printmaker, muralist, mixed-media. Married Chinese American. Schooled with latino and african american.

Correct stereotype

"Wall of Respect for Women": first large scale public mural by women

"Women's Wheel": her mother and grandmother, woman chain-linking ancestor in Japan

Put together real people with popular media stereotype in films.

"At the Heart of This Narrative Lies a Human Life":

counteract stereotype, people don't believe they exist.

"Portrait of a Young Girl": people don't know what contemporary Japanese people look like. They live in history book images misrepresentation.

Class Note

agency: autonomouse conscious mimicry: failure to assimilation break white assimilating culture create break (purpose: passing?), passive masquerade: conscious, assertion, active

Other: tricksterism, theatricality, role-playing and -reversal, self-imagery, stereo-typing

Feminism: one side want to celebrate female differences and the other want to stress female's ability to perform just as without any external help. Asian: on one side seen as crowded on the other side as calculated (gazer to the west and gazed)

picture Asian own America, self country. but asian aren't look like that? No asian today wear that. Nobody work in railroad or Chinatown dress like that.

image: to assert position in U.S., draw belonging

The real enemy is cultural difference, and our goal is not to gaze back, but to eliminate gaze and respect and recognize the other.

Photographer Tseng Kwong Chi was one of the influencers of Pipo's work. In his famous self-portrait series East Meets West, Tseng used phonography to capture himself dressed in the Mao suit in front of tourist sites. By exaggerating the Asian identity through clever use of pose and Mao suit, Tseng asserted his citizenship of and belongings to the land of the United States. Although his gesture in the image is typically thought of as a form of protest to the incomplete citizenship experienced by many Asian migrants, the choice of Mao suit tells a different story.

The typical Asian stereotype was fixed in the 1980s as Asian migrants started to work in railroads. The construction of Chinatowns as a result of resistance to masquerade further nailed down such stereotypes when low-paying Asian workers established their exclusive community. Clearly, this stereotype falls into the category of "unassimilable, evil, deceitful, cunning, and aggressive yellow horde;"(63) captured by Margo Machida in Unsettled Visions. The Mao suit, in contrast to the dress of Asian American working class, symbolizes the ruling class and military of growing Asian power, which lies out of the common stereotype of Asian migrants suggested by Machida. In fact, invented in the age of the Republic of China, the Mao suit was adopted in the Communist party and is still used today by Xi for diplomat purposes. Therefore, Tseng's photography, rather than asserting citizenship for Asian migrants, presents himself as a foreign (communist) invasion feared by many western gazes.


m social Darwinism, physical and cultural anthropology, and, ultimately, in the twentieth century, eugenics. For Asian migrants to the West, such primitivist notions have been end-lessly elaborated, especially in relation to zones of contact, public spaces where Asians and non-Asians interact. Chinatowns, in particular, have been mythologized in innumerable pulp novels and films as a "downtown, un-clean zone of opium dens, gambling parlors, rats, underground tunnels, filth, and disease."20 In such a schema, the cityscape takes on the attributes of the bodily self writ large; hence, in sharp contrast to the rational order of the white, Protestant uptown "mind," the taboo area of Chinatown repre-sents, for the dominant culture, the "bowels" and "genitals" of the American city. Thus, as an aspect of the trope of the Orient itself, Chinatown becomes the local site of Westerners' repulsion and voyeuristic fascination. In light of this recent history, and of earlier Orientalist notions of Asia as the source of undifferentiated hordes, it is not difficult to understand why Chinese immi-grants to America would be compared to swarming rats by a nativist press and a white-dominated labor movement that strove mightily to prevent further migration, even militating to remove those already here. Once they enter or are born into the sphere of the West, people of Asian descent-irrespective of background, class, or generational status-con-tinue to find themselves enmeshed, to differing degrees, in these inter-related discourses of primitivism and Oriental ism that have been so exten-sively elaborated in the Western imagination. Despite a long history of U.S. involvement with different Asian nations, many Americans still misperceive Asians, regardless of nationality, as members of a monolithic "Oriental" cul-ture. In this unfortunate and generally unquestioned distortion, there exists OT ERINu 63 an underlying mythologizing principle, which can best be summarized as "race indicates culture."21 Typically marked by their skin color and features as foreign or Other, Asians have been subjects of continuous stereotyping in political cartoons, films, and printed media since substantial numbers-initially Chinese-began arriving in the mid-18oos. America's mass media project the society's unconscious struggles and its visions of itself, including its position in relation to the rest of the world-both white and nonwhite.22 Even the most cursory glance at existing images makes it plain that Asians, like other ethnic minorities, have often been reduced to a limited number of stereotypes that the majority culture finds manageable or recognizable. While it is true that the phenomenon of stereotyping can be found in all societies, the critical issue for minoritized groups lies in unequal access to the dominant means of representation. To the degree that people of color still have comparatively little power over how they are named and depicted in the dominant culture, the corrosive influence of extant stereotypes will continue to have an impact.23 At the simplest level, the prevalent stereotypes of Asians in popular cul-ture can be broken into dual categories: an unassimilable, evil, deceitful, cunning, and aggressive yellow horde; and assimilable Asians who are modest, respectful, helpful to Americans, and who sometimes even sacri-fice their lives for them. This latter variety includes innumerable variations on the Asian sidekick role, who often replaced Native Americans and blacks as servants and helpers. Such Asian stereotypes have been broadly dissemi-nated through newspapers, magazines, literature, comics, and theater-and later through radio, film, and television. While some Asian characters, like the wise and aphorism-spouting Chinese detective Charlie Chan (who first appeared in the 1920s) are now considered laughable and campy, it can be argued that all stereotypes can be damaging insofar as they condi-tion generations of Americans to view Asians as exotic, different, not like "us" -and by extension, either inhuman or not fully human. Because they are convenient and constantly repeated, they quickly become normalized, absorbed into popular consciousness, and read back into the texture of life. To the extent that some in this country rely on such media for their infor-mation and form their expectations based on this sort of imagery, they can indeed exert a powerful influence. Drawing on analytical and critical tools offered by critical theory, race politics, and postcolonial discourse, the four artists in this discussion-Mar-

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