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Discussion B – Miscegenation and Assignment E.6

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Discussion B – Miscegenation

The United States has always been a nation with a population with ancestors from many different lands. It has also, for most of its history, been governed by a white majority that firmly believed in its own superiority and fought to limit the participation of those from other cultures.

To maintain white supremacy, it was necessary to maintain racial separations. By 1776, twelve of the thirteen colonies that declared independence outlawed interracial marriage. During the slave era, the “One Drop Rule” developed, declaring that anyone with any African heritage whatsoever was legally a Negro. During the Civil War in 1863, Abraham Lincoln’s famous Emancipation Proclamation declared that slaves in rebel states were free. When Lincoln ran for reelection in 1864, his opponents coined the term “miscegenation,” or the mixing of races, to try to increase fear of Abolition. Political cartoonists published parodies portraying the imagined horror of a society where people of different races lived together.

After the Civil War, many other laws were passed to maintain racial separations. With the advent of motion pictures (films), advocates for racial separation fought for codes against showing any interracial unions. In The Good Earth, a 1937 film based on the Pulitzer Prize winning novel set in China, a white actor, Paul Muni, was cast as the main Chinese character. A popular Chinese-American actress, Anna May Wong was considered for the role of his wife, O-Lan, but it was thought that having an Asian woman shown as the wife of a white man, even one playing a Chinese character, would be too scandalous.

Watch thisclip (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site.on the life and career of Anna May Wong. How did the fear of miscegenation affect her life and career?

In Chapter 3, we discussed orientalism, the exotic appeal of Asian subjects for a non-Asian audience. Many Asian-American artists, such as Jade Snow Wong (discussed in Chapter 4) responded to the appeal for things “oriental” while working in Chinatown, San Francisco. She also faced possible prejudice from the largely white audience visiting Chinatown due to the common stereotypes of Chinese and Chinese-American women in Hollywood films and through roles played by actresses like Anna May Wong.

How might these stereotypes and the general public’s reaction to them affect the career of a Chinese-American artist like Jade Snow Wong?

Please write about 200+ word to discuss this question.

Assignment E.6

Part 1 – Mine Okubo and Executive Order 9066

1. Read the account of Mine Okubo’s experience at the beginning of Chapter Four. How would you feel in this situation? How do you think you would react?

2. Can you think of groups of people (subculture, marginalized group) in American society today who share an experience similar to Mine Okubo’s?

3. What can we learn from Mine Okubo’s art in Citizen 13660?

Part 2 – Angel Island
1. Read about artist Yun Gee in Chapter Four. Watchthis (Links to an external site.)Links to an external clip about the immigration station on Angel Island. What does Don Lee say about his immigration experience that may be similar to Yun Gee’s experience? How might this help us understand the influence of immigration on Yun Gee’s art?

Please write about 300+ word to answer the question.

Password for 04chapter(part1) : harlem

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