Asians in the Media- Going Way Back

Week Two Blog:

This week we began watching Fresh Off the Boat season 2. Something I have noticed is that while I may not be of Asian-American descent, I actually really relate to the show and its characters. It just made me think about how much more in common POC than they may think they are? For example, the entire season on the the car sale and making sure that Eddie’s mom and dad get the best deal they can possibly get is exactly how my family operates. My mom specifically, who is very similar to Eddie’s mom, never leaves until she gets what she wants– which is great, go her! But it’s kind of hilarious the extent she will do it at because it really is paralleled by Jessica. I think my dad even used to be embarrassed by it, wanting to just take the easy way out, but my mom never took no for an answer– or still doesn’t, you could say. My grandma, who just recently moved into our home, also reminds me of the grandma in the show. I just thought that that was really neat. It made me feel a sense of similarity and solitary amongst POC that sometimes isn’t thought about– especially when one thinks of the POC vs POC for the resources the dominant provides.

In class we also spent some time looking at the history of Asian-American representation in the media. We began reading the book Asian-Americans in the media, which I think was a lot smoother of a read than the previous article, but it was also easier to connect. For me, it was just SO SHOCKING and hard to swallow that these forms of media were actually put out there AND celebrated. Not only that, but also shocked that some of these I had seen myself and just never really reflected on? Some, I really hadn’t seen, like the war propaganda. Others like the Flinstone cartoon characters or the aristocats– again, clearly had just been normalized. The Yellow Peril and the Yellow Terror discussed in the reading was very very tangible and real in these media representations. There was a great deal of mimicry, it was extremist, and what it has done is just grouped all Asian subgroups into this one lump of problems. I think that the reason why so many people assume every Asian is Chinese or that they all use chopsticks etc. is because of this! There has been such a lack of positive recognition–or even individual recognition– of Asian subgroups.

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