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標題: From China Men to Typical American: An American Dream for Chinese Americans
作者: 林奕伶
Lin, Yi-ling
關鍵字: \;中國佬;China Men;Typical American;Chinese American;典型美國人;美國夢
出版社: 外國語文學系研究所
The purpose of this thesis is to discuss the cultural identity of Chinese
Americans. In examining the two novels, Maxine Hong Kingston's China Men
and Gish Jen's Typical American, I try to discern how Chinese Americans
posit themselves between the two poles, "Chinese" and "American."
The thesis is divided into five chapters. The first and the last chapters
are "Introduction" and "Conculsion" respectively, designed to offer a
summary and a review on the content of the main body. Chapter Two is
concerned with the identity transformation of Chinese Americans. From the
revision of a multicultural canon, we infer the importance and necessity of
a cultural identity with multicultural meaning. Most of my discussion is
based upon Stuart Hall's observation and statements on the issue of cultural
identity. Being in a white dominant society, Chinese Americans should
mainfest their cultural differences for distinction and in order to find for
themselves a unique place. Sustaining both their differences and
similarities with the mainstream society, they would thus be prevented from
genocidal cultural assimilation, or being considered as permanent
unassimilable aliens.
The subject of Chapter Three is China Men. In this book, Kingston attempts
to reconstruct an American history in Chinese Americans' perspective. It is
composed with various resources, such as Chinese legends, stories, and
anecdotes about Chinese immigrants' contribution on the nation building and
development, which are not recorded in official history. In reconstructing
the alternative history, Kingston not only manifests Chinese Americans'
cultural differences, but also confirms their validity and legitimacy in
American society.
The major concern of Chapter Four is Typical American. Instead of Kingston's
reconstructing a history, Gish Jen concentrates on narrating the story of
a Chinese immigrant family. In this book, Jen also inverts the meaning of
"typical American": from white Caucasian American to multicultural,
multiethnic American. Owing to the inversion of meaning, Jen therefore
challenges the assumed conception and stimulates more reconsideration and
redefinition on the term "American."
Moreover, the juxtaposition of the two books' titles is an interesting
comparison. At the first glance, it seems that "Chinese" or "American"
in an either/or choice for Chinese Americans. In fact, their differences
make it impossible to categorize them into either group. As Hall points
out, the cultural identity is not permanently fixed. Fluctuatinhg between
the two poles, Chinese Americans have to find a balance in order to locate
themselves. And this request has to do with a multicultural identity.

本論文試圖討論華裔美國人的文化認同.藉由討論兩部小說--湯亭亭的 [中國佬]
,以及任璧蓮的 [典型美國人] --來探討華裔美國人如何在 "中國人" 及 "美國
人" 的兩極之中尋找一個可以安身立命的中間點.
論文共分為五章.首末兩章分別為 [簡介] 與 [結論] ,第二章旨在討論華人移民
的認同轉變,第三章的重點在於 [中國佬] 一書,第四章則討論 [典型美國人].
Appears in Collections:外國語文學系所

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