I’ve been doing a lot of research recently about teaching English in China. Clearly, this isn’t exactly Asian Americans in Media, but it has made me think about Chinese – American relations, and how those are shaping the opportunities available to me and the reception I’m supposed to expect in China.
Recently, the Chinese Ministry of Education decreed that all English language classes have a foreign, native English speaker to help the students master pronunciation and idiom. Apparently, there is significant tension between the Chinese school administrators and the imported native speakers. They see the decree as intrusive, and are not as friendly towards these new hires as they otherwise might be. The students themselves are largely nonplussed as well. Most will stay in China, and rarely, if ever, speak English again. For the blithe American, these jobs might seem fun and interesting, but the resentment is more than superficial.
Returning to Asian – American relations, this poses an interesting new mess to sort out: until now, we have only discussed White – on -Asian mistreatment, but now we have a forum for discussing prejudices working the other way. In China, do they teach American-Asians in Media courses? Is George Bush:Evil Americans as Fu Manchu:Evil Chinese?
If I get the job, I’ll probably get a chance to tackle the problem myself, but I wanted to present the problem as a new angle on immigrant model minorities in a way that references themes and trends we’ve discussed in class.
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