Sunday, February 3, 2008

Identity

“It’s a bunch of bullshit, man!” Well Steve, you may think identity is bullshit, but Jo and I would like to disagree. The issues regarding identity ten, twenty, thirty years ago are still evident today. Too long have people avoided or pretend they understand this social issue, too simple have they made this idea and cut it down into the two-word “Asian (dash/no dash) American” phrase. Then and now, Asian American identity still spans across a spectrum as sporadic as the characters in Chan is Missing. Jo and Steve’s journey across Chinatown in search of Chan Hung is similar to Renee Tajima’s My America in the fact that they are both seeking answers. However, Chan is Missing does not come to a typical warm and happy Hollywood ending. Like Asian American culture, Chan Hung is still missing, hard to in down even after the several interviews with the people that know him. In the only picture of Chan Hung, his face is covered by shadows, making it impossible to clearly decipher his looks. It’s difficult to pin down in a simple definition what Asian American people/culture/idea is. In fact, it is impossible. Asian American culture seems to be integrated, entwined in the culture of America, contributing to the difficulty for those who are searching for a simple answer.

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