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By Maria C. Zamora

Nation, Race & heritage in Asian American Literature discusses the ideological approaches at paintings in nationalism, either in its statement that the country is typical and self-evident, and within the method it seeks to suppress the irrational and contingent. The e-book examines the symbolic procedures wherein the USA constitutes its topics as electorate, connecting such procedures to the worldwide dynamics of empire development and a suppressed background of yankee imperialism.

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The body, as a somatic entity that exists within the contingencies of time and space, of need, desire, gratification and denial, helps maintain a sense of Asian America as imbricated in material history. This history is deeply rooted in stories of both willed and forced migrations, of both national and global economic change, of wars of colonization, decolonization, and global strife. The texts chosen here for closer reading are literary representations that clearly exceed the traditional boundaries of the United States yet still reflect a context in which America matters.

Asian American Studies scholar Lisa Lowe points out that in the last century and a half, the American citizen has been defined “over and against” the Asian immigrant, in legal, economical, and cultural terms. ”29 Furthermore, as the concept of the “immigrant” in American sociology and public policy has historically signified “European immigrants,” it is telling to track the changing contours of such a category. In the last several decades this concept has been redrawn in an effort to universalize the temporality of assimilation—an assimilation earlier attributed to Irish Americans and Italian Americans, and extended more recently to ethnic minority groups from the “third world”.

In the end, it is both men’s bodies that are part of a materialist discourse—a corporeality imbricated within an economy of representation and power, which is itself situated within the logic of race and sexuality in the U. S. cultural imaginary. Erotics and Seduction We are discontinuous beings who perish in isolation in the midst of an incomprehensible adventure, but we yearn for our lost continuity. —Georges Bataille, Eroticism: Death and Sensuality In Eroticism: Death and Sensuality, Georges Bataille suggests that eroticism is the desire to reconcile the discontinuity of existence.

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