Ruth Ann Koesun, Versatile Ballet Theater Dancer, Dies at 89

Posted in Articles, Arts, Asian Diaspora, Biography, Media Archive, United States on 2023-01-23 15:35Z by Steven

Ruth Ann Koesun, Versatile Ballet Theater Dancer, Dies at 89

The New York Times
2018-02-14

Anna Kisselgoff

Ruth Ann Koesun with John Kriza in Michael Kidd’s “On Stage!” in 1947.

Ruth Ann Koesun, a principal dancer in American Ballet Theater who epitomized the company’s early eclectic profile by excelling in roles that ranged from Billy the Kid’s Mexican sweetheart to the “Bluebird” pas de deux from “The Sleeping Beauty,” died on Feb. 1 in Chicago. She was 89.

Her death was confirmed by her goddaughter, Ellen Coghlan.

Because of her lyrical style in ballets like “Les Sylphides,” Ms. Koesun was often cast as a Romantic ballerina. But she could also show dramatic ferocity, as the evil antiheroine Ate in Antony Tudor’s “Undertow,” which depicts a young murderer’s development.

Contemporary ballet makers favored her. In 1950, Herbert Ross, a new choreographer and future film director, cast her in his “Caprichos,” based on Goya’s etchings. She portrayed a dead woman who is tossed around by her partner in choreographed movements that suggested she was inert…

…Ruth Ann Koesun was born on May 15, 1928, in Chicago to Dr. Paul Z. Koesun, a Chinese physician in Chicago’s Chinatown, and the former Mary Mondulick, who was of Russian descent…

Read the entire obituary here.

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The Racism of People Who Love You: Essays on Mixed Race Belonging

Posted in Asian Diaspora, Autobiography, Books, Family/Parenting, Media Archive, Monographs, United States on 2023-01-22 18:12Z by Steven

The Racism of People Who Love You: Essays on Mixed Race Belonging

Beacon Press
2023-01-10
200 pages
Size: 5.5 x 8.5 Inches
Cloth ISBN: 978-080702636-6
Audio ISBN: 978-080700776-1

Samira K. Mehta, Assistant Professor of Women and Gender Studies and Jewish Studies
University of Colorado, Boulder

An unflinching look at the challenges and misunderstandings mixed-race people face in family spaces and intimate relationships across their varying cultural backgrounds

In this emotionally powerful and intellectually provocative blend of memoir, cultural criticism, and theory, scholar and essayist Samira Mehta reflects on many facets of being multiracial.

Born to a white American and a South Asian immigrant, Mehta grew up feeling more comfortable with her mother’s family than her father’s—they never carried on conversations in languages she couldn’t understand or blamed her for finding the food was too spicy. In adulthood, she realized that some of her Indian family’s assumptions about the world had become an indelible part of her—and that her well-intentioned parents had not known how to prepare her for a world that would see her as a person of color.

Popular belief assumes that mixedness gives you the ability to feel at home in more than one culture, but the flipside shows you can feel just as alienated in those spaces. In 7 essays that dissect her own experiences with a frankness tempered by generosity, Mehta confronts questions about:

  • authenticity and belonging;
  • conscious and unconscious cultural inheritance;
  • appropriate mentorship;
  • the racism of people who love you.

The Racism of People Who Love You invites people of mixed race into the conversation on race in America and the melding of found and inherited cultures of hybrid identity.

Table of Contents

  • Author’s Note
  • Introduction
  • ONE: Where Are You Really From? A Triptych
  • TWO: Meat Is Murder
  • THREE: Failing the Authenticity Test
  • FOUR: American Racism
  • FIVE: Appropriation
  • SIX: Mentoring
  • SEVEN: The Racism of People Who Love You
  • Acknowledgments
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Race and Role: The Mixed-Race Asian Experience in American Drama

Posted in Asian Diaspora, Books, Forthcoming Media, Literary/Artistic Criticism, Monographs, United States on 2022-12-16 01:30Z by Steven

Race and Role: The Mixed-Race Asian Experience in American Drama

Rutgers University Press
2023-06-16
194 pages,
8 bw, 3 color
6.12 x 9.25
Paperback ISBN: 9781978835535
Cloth ISBN: 9781978835542
EPUB ISBN: 9781978835559
Kindle ISBN: 9781978835566
PDF ISBN: 9781978835573

Rena M. Heinrich, Assistant Professor of Theatre Practice
University of Southern California

Mixed-race Asian American plays are often overlooked for their failure to fit smoothly into static racial categories, rendering mixed-race drama inconsequential in conversations about race and performance. Since the nineteenth century, however, these plays have long advocated for the social significance of multiracial Asian people.

Race and Role: The Mixed-Race Experience in American Drama traces the shifting identities of multiracial Asian figures in theater from the late-nineteenth century to the present day and explores the ways that mixed-race Asian identity transforms our understanding of race. Mixed-Asian playwrights harness theater’s generative power to enact performances of “double liminality” and expose the absurd tenacity with which society clings to a tenuous racial scaffolding.

Table of Contents

  • Chapter 1: Stages of Denial
  • Chapter 2: Tragic Eurasians: Mixed-Asian Dramas in the Late-Nineteenth Century
  • Chapter 3: Shape Shifting Performances in the Twentieth Century
  • Chapter 4: Cosmopolitan Identity in Mixed Dramatic Forms
  • Chapter 5: Multiraciality in the Post-racial Era
  • Chapter 6: Beyond Monoracial Hierarchies: Recovering Lost Selves
  • Acknowledgments
  • Index
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Ruby Red Skies, A Novel

Posted in Asian Diaspora, Books, Canada, Media Archive, Novels on 2022-11-27 03:06Z by Steven

Ruby Red Skies, A Novel

Roseway Publishing (an imprint of Fernwood Publishing)
October 2022
272 pages
8.5 x 5.5 in
Paperback ISBN: 9781773635606

Taslim Burkowicz

Ruby used to be a fiery, sexy, musical genius. But when she got pregnant as a teenager in the 90s, her life took a turn into banality. Now a middle-aged Indo-Canadian woman, she feels unseen and unheard by her white husband and struggles to communicate with her mixed-race daughter. When she discovers her husband cheating, she embarks on a quest to unearth exciting secrets from her past. To find what she needs, she drives straight into B.C.’s raging wildfires, accompanied only by the fantastical stories her mother used to tell about their ancient Moghul ancestry — a dancer named Rubina who lived in the concubine quarters of the great Red Fort. This book is at once historical fiction and political romance, deftly navigating themes of mixed-race relationships, climate change, motherhood, body shame, death and the passage of time.

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The White Mosque: A Silk Road Memoir

Posted in Asian Diaspora, Books, Media Archive, Novels, Religion on 2022-11-27 03:05Z by Steven

The White Mosque: A Silk Road Memoir

Hurst Publishers
October 2022
304 pages
Hardback ISBN: 9781787388079

Sofia Samatar, Assistant Professor of English
James Madison University, Harrisonburg, Virginia

A rich history of wanderers, exiles and intruders. A haunting personal journey through Central Asia. An intimate reflection on mixed identity shaped by cultural crossings.

In the late 1800s, a group of German-speaking Mennonites fled Russia for Muslim Central Asia, to await Christ’s return.

Over a century later, Sofia Samatar traces their gruelling journey across desert and mountains, and its improbable fruit: a small Christian settlement inside the Khanate of Khiva. Named ‘The White Mosque’ after the Mennonites’ whitewashed church, the village—a community of peace, prophecy, music and martyrs—lasted fifty years.

Within this curious tale, Sofia discovers a tapestry of characters connected by the ancient Silk Road: a fifteenth-century astronomer-king; an intrepid Swiss woman traveller; the first Uzbek photographer; a free spirit of the Harlem Renaissance. Along the way, in a voice both warm and wise, she explores her own complex upbringing as an American Mennonite of colour, the daughter of a Swiss-American Christian and a Somali Muslim.

On this pilgrimage to a lost village and a near-forgotten history, Samatar traces the porous borders of identity and narrative. When you leave your tribe, what remains? How do we enter the stories of others? And how, out of life’s buried archives and startling connections, does a person construct a self?

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Anglo-India and the End of Empire

Posted in Asian Diaspora, Books, History, Media Archive, Monographs on 2022-09-12 16:14Z by Steven

Anglo-India and the End of Empire

Hurst Publishers
September 2022
370 pages
Hardback ISBN: 9781787383128

Uther Charlton-Stevens, Fellow
Royal Asiatic Society of Great Britain and Ireland

A startling new history of a community’s struggle to be heard as Empire waned in India, with echoes for all those of mixed heritage.

The standard image of the Raj is of an aloof, pampered and prejudiced British elite lording it over an oppressed and hostile Indian subject population. Like most caricatures, this obscures as much truth as it reveals. The British had not always been so aloof. The earlier, more cosmopolitan period of East India Company rule saw abundant ‘interracial’ sex and occasional marriage, alongside greater cultural openness and exchange. The result was a large and growing ‘mixed-race’ community, known by the early twentieth century as Anglo-Indians.

Notwithstanding its faults, Empire could never have been maintained without the active, sometimes enthusiastic, support of many colonial subjects. These included Indian elites, professionals, civil servants, businesspeople and minority groups of all kinds, who flourished under the patronage of the imperial state, and could be used in a ‘divide and rule’ strategy to prolong colonial rule. Independence was profoundly unsettling to those destined to become minorities in the new nation, and the Anglo-Indians were no exception.

This refreshing account looks at the dramatic end of British rule in India through Anglo-Indian eyes, a perspective that is neither colonial apologia nor nationalist polemic. Its history resonates strikingly with the complex identity debates of the twenty-first century.

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Asian-White Mixed Identity after COVID-19: Racist Racial Projects and the Effects on Asian Multiraciality

Posted in Articles, Asian Diaspora, Media Archive, Politics/Public Policy, Social Justice, Social Science, United States on 2022-06-23 14:23Z by Steven

Asian-White Mixed Identity after COVID-19: Racist Racial Projects and the Effects on Asian Multiraciality

Genealogy
Volume 6, Issue 2, (2022-06-15)
pages 53-68
DOI: 10.3390/genealogy6020053

Hephzibah Strmic-Pawl, Assistant Professor, Sociology and Anthropology
Manhattanville College, Purchase, New York

Erica Chito Childs, Professor of Sociology
Hunter College, City University of New York, New York, New York

Stephanie Laudone, Assistant Professor of Sociology
Borough of Manhattan Community College, New York, New York

With the onset of the Coronavirus and racist statements about the origins of COVID-19 in China there has been a surge in anti-Asian discrimination in the United States. The U.S. case is worthy of special focus because of former President Trump’s explicit racist rhetoric, referring to the Coronavirus as the “China virus” and “Kung-flu”. This rise in anti-Asian discrimination has led to a heightened awareness of racism against Asians and a corollary increase in AAPI activism. Based on survey and in-depth interview data with Asian-White multiracials, we examine how recent spikes in anti-Asian hate has shifted Asian-White multiracials to have a more heightened awareness of racism and a shift in their racial consciousness. We theorize how multiracials intermediary status on the racial hierarchy can be radically shifted at any moment in relation to emerging racist racial projects, which has broader implications for the status of mixed people globally.

Read the entire article in HTML or PDF format.

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Intermarriage and the Friendship of Peoples: Ethnic Mixing in Soviet Central Asia

Posted in Asian Diaspora, Books, Communications/Media Studies, Europe, Family/Parenting, History, Literary/Artistic Criticism, Media Archive, Monographs on 2022-05-16 18:28Z by Steven

Intermarriage and the Friendship of Peoples: Ethnic Mixing in Soviet Central Asia

Cornell University Press
2022-05-15
300 pages
6 x 9
Hardcover ISBN13: 9781501762949
Hardcover ISBN10: 150176294X

Adrienne Edgar, Professor of History
University of California, Santa Barbara

Intermarriage and the Friendship of Peoples examines the racialization of identities and its impact on mixed couples and families in Soviet Central Asia. In marked contrast to its Cold War rivals, the Soviet Union celebrated mixed marriages among its diverse ethnic groups as a sign of the unbreakable friendship of peoples and the imminent emergence of a single “Soviet people.” Yet the official Soviet view of ethnic nationality became increasingly primordial and even racialized in the USSR’s final decades. In this context, Adrienne Edgar argues, mixed families and individuals found it impossible to transcend ethnicity, fully embrace their complex identities, and become simply “Soviet.”

Looking back on their lives in the Soviet Union, ethnically mixed people often reported that the “official” nationality in their identity documents did not match their subjective feelings of identity, that they were unable to speak “their own” native language, and that their ambiguous physical appearance prevented them from claiming the nationality with which they most identified. In all these ways, mixed couples and families were acutely and painfully affected by the growth of ethnic primordialism and by the tensions between the national and supranational projects in the Soviet Union.

Intermarriage and the Friendship of Peoples is based on more than eighty in-depth oral history interviews with members of mixed families in Kazakhstan and Tajikistan, along with published and unpublished Soviet documents, scholarly and popular articles from the Soviet press, memoirs and films, and interviews with Soviet-era sociologists and ethnographers.

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Tao Leigh Goffe Is On A Mission To Uncover ‘Afro-Asian Intimacies’

Posted in Articles, Asian Diaspora, Autobiography, Biography, Media Archive, United Kingdom, United States, Videos on 2022-05-13 18:58Z by Steven

Tao Leigh Goffe Is On A Mission To Uncover ‘Afro-Asian Intimacies’

Sweet July
2022-05-09

Nylah Burton

“I am the sedimented sum of four islands. The Caribbean, Hong Kong, the British Isles, New York City; all of them seas and stretches of water containing many islands.”

“My parents named me Tao,” Dr. Tao Leigh Goffe narrates as she approaches an intricately carved, dark wood chest in season two, episode seven of the Hulu series Your Attention Please: Initiative 29.

Directed by Carmen LoBue, the short film is focused on Goffe—who was born in London and lives in New York City—and her Afro-Asian heritage. Opening the chest, Goffe’s hand grazes family photos and mementos: Black Caribbean men in smart suits, her Jamaican Chinese mother, and red envelopes gilded with gold, containing one word: Legacy…

Read the entire article here.

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Mana Tangatarua: Mixed heritages, ethnic identity and biculturalism in Aotearoa/New Zealand

Posted in Anthologies, Anthropology, Asian Diaspora, Books, Identity Development/Psychology, Media Archive, Oceania, Politics/Public Policy, Social Science on 2022-05-13 17:17Z by Steven

Mana Tangatarua: Mixed heritages, ethnic identity and biculturalism in Aotearoa/New Zealand

Routledge
2017-11-16
236 Pages
14 B/W Illustrations
Hardcover ISBN: 9781138233362
Paperback ISBN: 9780367885304
eBook ISBN: 9781315309811

Edited By:

Zarine L. Rocha, Affiliated Researcher
Department of Sociology
National University of Singapore, Singapore

Melinda Webber, Associate Professor in the Faculty of Education and Social Work
University of Auckland

This volume explores mixed race/mixed ethnic identities in Aotearoa/New Zealand. Mixed race and mixed ethnic identity are growing in popularity as research topics around the world. This edited collection looks at mixed race and mixed ethnic identity in New Zealand: a unique context, as multiple ethnic identities have been officially recognised for more than 30 years.

The book draws upon research across a range of disciplines, exploring the historical and contemporary ways in which official and social understandings of mixed race and ethnicity have changed. It focuses on the interactions between race, ethnicity, national identity, indigeneity and culture, especially in terms of visibility and self-defined identity in the New Zealand context.

Mana Tangatarua situates New Zealand in the existing international scholarship, positioning experiences from New Zealand within theoretical understandings of mixedness. The chapters develop wider theories of mixed race and mixed ethnic identity, at macro and micro levels, looking at the interconnections between the two. The volume as a whole reveals the diverse ways in which mixed race is experienced and understood, providing a key contribution to the theory and development of mixed race globally.

Table of Contents

  • Foreword Paul Spoonley
  • Introduction: Situating mixed race in New Zealand and the world. Zarine L. Rocha and Melinda Webber
  • Section one: Mixedness and classifications across generations
    • Chapter One: A history of mixed race in Aotearoa/New Zealand. Zarine L. Rocha and Angela Wanhalla
    • Chapter Two: Reflections of identity: ethnicity, ethnic recording and ethnic mobility. Robert Didham
    • Chapter Three: Is ethnicity all in the family? How parents in Aotearoa New Zealand identify their children. Polly Atatoa Carr, Tahu Kukutai, Dinusha Bandara and Patrick Broman
    • Chapter Four: Lives at the intersections: multiple ethnicities and child protection. Emily Keddell
  • Section two: Mixed identifications, indigeneity and biculturalism
    • Chapter Five: Raranga Wha: Mana whenua, mana moana and mixedness in one Māori/Fijian/Samoan/Pākehā whānau. Rae Si‘ilata
    • Chapter Six: Beyond Appearances: Mixed ethnic and cultural identities among biliterate Japanese-European New Zealander young adults. Kaya Oriyama
    • Chapter Seven: Love and Politics: Rethinking Biculturalism and Multiculturalism in Aotearoa-New Zealand. Lincoln I. Dam
    • Chapter Eight: Māori and Pākehā encounters of difference – the realisation that we’re not the same. Karyn Paringatai
  • Section three: Mixing the majority/Pākehā identity
    • Chapter Nine: Multidimensional intersections: the merging and emerging of complex European settler identities. Robert Didham, Paul Callister and Geoff Chambers
    • Chapter Ten: Hauntology and Pākehā: disrupting the notion of homogeneity. Esther Fitzpatrick
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