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Julia Cho’s Durango: Asian American Male Narratives of Frustrated Fantasies

  • Journal of Modern English Drama
  • Abbr : JMBARD
  • 2016, 29(3), pp.191-212
  • Publisher : 한국현대영미드라마학회
  • Research Area : Humanities > English Language and Literature > English Literature > Contemporary English Drama

정광숙 1

1숙명여자대학교

Accredited

ABSTRACT

ulia Cho’s Durango: Asian American Male Narratives of Frustrated Fantasies Abstract Chung,Kwangsook Julia Cho’s Durango, the last play of her desert trilogy, depicts the three Korean American male characters, Boo-Seng and his two sons—Isaac and Jimmy, going on a trip to Durango, Colorado. Although the play includes many American and/or universal features, Cho provides distinctively Asian American narratives for her characters in order to reveal their frustration and repressed desires. Boo-Seng feels that he has not achieved much and does not tell his sons that he has been laid off. His reaction to a guest at the motel make him aware of his homoerotic desire, and two erratic incidents—he kills the dog they ran over and falls in the motel pool—demonstrate that he has to act physically because he is deeply frustrated at his inability to communicate verbally and realize his deeper desires. Isaac has returned from a medical school admissions interview in Hawaii, but, in reality, he did not show up for it. He would rather compose a song about his lonely and boring life. Jimmy quit the swim team after an incident which made him fantasize a phantom, the Red Angel. He constructs the life story of the Red Angel only to destroy it on the way back home. The sons share their secrets with each other, but Jimmy and Boo-Seng’s secrets are not revealed to each other and become a burden for them to deal with. At the end of the trip they do not seem to know themselves or each other any better than before. This paper discusses how the narratives of these Asian American male characters disclose their fantasies only to highlight their frustration, like their trip to Durango.

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