본문 바로가기
  • Home

The Aesthetics of Displacement in Flipzoids and Cleveland Raining

  • Journal of Modern English Drama
  • Abbr : JMBARD
  • 2009, 22(2), pp.5-38
  • Publisher : 한국현대영미드라마학회
  • Research Area : Humanities > English Language and Literature > English Literature > Contemporary English Drama

Hyun-joo Ki 1

1경기대학교

Accredited

ABSTRACT

This study examines the condition of life of Asian diaspora who are displaced from home in Ralph Pena’s Flipzoids and Sung Rno’s Cleveland Raining. Specifically it aims to explore the aesthetics of displacement which are embodied in Asian diaspora’s constant struggle to imagine and seek home expressed through unrealistic theatrical structure, dramatic devices, dramatic form, and languages. In Flipzoids, the sea replaced by a big water basin emphasizes the alienation of Filipino diaspora from the US mainstream and their disconnection from the Philippines. Although Aying can revive her home while she touches the sea, Redford who is 1.5 generation, cannot configure any kind of home. His sense of displacement becomes palpable when he aspires to communicate with people in a narrow public toilet. Like Redford, who does not have cultural basis for forming a sense of home, Jimmy and Mari in Cleveland Raining, who live in a remote house in Ohio, try to find home. However, for them, there is not any form of home. This sense of displacement is represented in the theatrical space in which there are not any specific props except a Volkswagen, a vehicle for moving. Asian diaspora’s being displaced from home in the two plays is also highlighted through language issues. For diaspora who left their homeland and adopted a new home, bilingualism is necessary. However, they find that English cannot be a medium by which they express their internal selves. Neither do they know their native language, which might help them to configure home. As a result, their languages cannot exert power but become fragmentary. Both Filipino diaspora and Korean diaspora represent their being displaced from home through remembering or imagining of home or leaving the present home. Redford in Flipzoids constantly imagines a space which he can belong; on the other hand, Jimmy prepares to leave the present home during the play by converting a Volkswagen into a floating car in the water and starts to travel at the end. These vigorous actions signify their resistance against the U.S. mainstream society which excludes racial minorities. They do not conceptualize the U.S. as their new home. Therefore their persistent pursuit of home and acceptance of displacement as their mode of life imply the political significance.

Citation status

* References for papers published after 2022 are currently being built.

This paper was written with support from the National Research Foundation of Korea.