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Two Multicultural Recipes for Flower Drum Song

  • Journal of Modern English Drama
  • Abbr : JMBARD
  • 2017, 30(1), pp.169-192
  • Publisher : 한국현대영미드라마학회
  • Research Area : Humanities > English Language and Literature > English Literature > Contemporary English Drama

Seunghyun Hwang 1

1경기대학교

Accredited

ABSTRACT

In the history of U.S. immigration Asians have been burdened with various derogatory stereotypes because of political and economic interests. The readjusted legal restrictions on immigration and citizenship following World War II did not immediately trigger a shift in social attitudes towards Asian American heritage. As a precursor to the idea of a multicultural society, mainstream media added a less derogatory stereotype to the repeating negative stereotypes, bolstering the illusionary assumption of Asian identity and commercializing Orientalism. The focus of this essay is Chinese American stereotype presentation in the late 1950s with attention paid to how race and gender shaped the representations of culture, identity, and political citizenship as seen through the lens of an immigrant and the lens of two dominant culture icons. C. Y. Lee’s novel The Flower Drum Song and Rodgers and Hammerstein’s musical Flower Drum Song are compared to uncover the difference between how an immigrant Asian American cultural producer and two American mainstream cultural moguls commercialized the portrayal of the Asian American identity in terms of cultural citizenship.

Citation status

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