Offering a rich and insightful road map of Asian American history as it has evolved over more than 200 years, this book marks the first systematic attempt to take stock of this field of study. It examines, comments, and questions the changing assumptions and contexts underlying the experiences and contributions of an incredibly diverse population of Americans. Arriving and settling in this nation as early as the 1790s, with American-born generations stretching back more than a century, Asian Americans have become an integral part of the American experience; this cleverly organized book marks the trajectory of that journey, offering researchers invaluable information and interpretation.
Part 1 offers a synoptic narrative history, a chronology, and a set of periodizations that reflect different ways of constructing the Asian American past.
Part 2 presents lucid discussions of historical debates—such as interpreting the anti-Chinese movement of the late 1800s and the underlying causes of Japanese American internment during World War II—and such emerging themes as transnationalism and women and gender issues.
Part 3 contains a historiographical essay and a wide-ranging compilation of book, film, and electronic resources for further study of core themes and groups, including Chinese, Japanese, Filipino, Hmong, Indian, Korean, Vietnamese, and others.
About the Author
Table of Contents
Part 1: Narrative Overview
1. Narrative History
Part 2: Historical Debates
1. Hawaii's Population Before European Contact
2. Hawaiians and Captain James Cook
4. The Anti-Chinese Movement
5. America's Concentration Camps
Part 3: Emerging Themes
2. Women and Gender
3. The Law
4. Japanese American Resistance
Part 4: Chronology
Part 5: Historiography and Resources
What People are Saying About This
An indispensable resourcethe one book that everyone who reads, teaches, or writes Asian American history will turn to first for its insights, analyses, overviews, and guides to resources. Okihiro captures the dynamism of the field brilliantly by highlighting long standing debates and emerging themes as well as the cumulative consensus that has emerged from the by-now large body of research produced by historians of Asian America. Comprehensive and complete in its coverage of Asian America, this volume also distinguishes itself as a sensitive and self-reflexive rumination about the general processes of the historian's craft.
Comprehensive, wide-ranging, and authoritative, Gary Y. Okihiro's work offers a superbly well-informed appraisal of the development of the field of Asian American history, its current status, and the new directions in which it is moving. The book will be indispensable for scholars and students in all fields of American history, for as Okihiro amply demonstrates: 'Asian American history is an account of America's past. It is America writ large.'
A comprehensive and well-organized guide to scholarship and, moreover, includes a lucid narrative and assessment of the major historical debates in the field. It will prove an invaluable reference tool to specialists in Asian American history as well as to students and teachers in American studies in general.
Mari Jo Buhle, Brown University
A monumental achievement! Gary Okihiro has made a major contribution to the exciting field of Asian-American Studies. In graceful, readable prose, with a confident mastery of the relevant scholarship, he offers a narrative overview, a thoughtful exploration of contested interpretive issues, a survey of emerging themes, and a guide to the historical sources. This invaluable work illuminates the experience of Asian and Pacific Island groups that are central to America's past, presentand future. This is American history at its newest and best.