The Big Aiiieeeee!

The Big Aiiieeeee!

by Frank Chin

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
``Aiiieeeee!'' is the angry cry of Asian Americans, ``long ignored and forcibly excluded from creative participation in American culture.'' In their incendiary introduction, the editors of this absorbing collection condemn the ``white racist imagination'' that has permeated such popular Asian American works as Amy Tan's The Joy Luck Club . The writings themselves--remarkably diverse, ranging from haiku to autobiography--present a subtler, often poignant picture of Chinese and Japanese immigrants and their American-born childrenpk striving to adjust to an unwelcoming new culture. The best-known piece is an excerpt from Louis Chu's novel Eat a Bowl of Tea ; other works are more obscure but no less vivid. In the short story ``Leaves from the Mental Portfolio of an Eurasian,'' Sui Sin Far, one of several eloquent women writers included, describes a young girl's struggle for identity in late 19th-century America. ``Why did God make us to be hooted and stared at? Papa is English, Mamma2 ``m''s in text is Chinese. Why couldn't we have been either one thing or the other?'' The editors' previous collection was Aiiieeeee!: An Anthology of Asian American Writers. (July)
Library Journal
Partisan politics is a poor reason for putting together an anthology. Though this book claims to be an anthology of Chinese American and Japanese American literature, it is actually an excuse for the editors to put forth an agenda that condemns any writing not matching their philosophy as inherently and viciously anti-Asian and anti-Asian American. Materials in this anthology were chosen for their ``political correctness'' and not for their literary value. Highly respected Asian American writers such as Maxine Hong Kingston and Amy Tan are excluded for ``sucking up to the white Christian fantasy.'' Some of the material is rehashed from their earlier anthology Aiiieeeee! ( LJ 8/74), and the newly added material does nothing to improve the scope of the collection. The result is a highly biased, very uneven collection of fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and miscellaneous writings. Not recommended.--Glenn Masuchika, Chaminade Univ. Lib., Honolulu

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Product Details

Penguin Publishing Group
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5.30(w) x 8.00(h) x 1.60(d)

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Meet the Author

Shawn Wong was born in Oakland, California, in 1949. He is a professor of Asian American Studies at the University of Washington in Seattle. He has coedited the much-acclaimed Yardbird anthologies as well as Aiiieeeee!: An Anthology of Asian American Writers, and The Big Aiiieeeee!

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