From Exile To Diaspora: Versions Of The Filipino Experience In The United States

  • Published date: April 11, 2018

As the largest contingent of Asian/Pacific Islanders in the United States today, Filipinos have been described as “invisible,” “forgotten,” marginal “others,” and, on the whole, inconsequential. From Exile to Diaspora challenges these stereotypes. With the Philippines undergoing revolutionary transformation, the Filipino diaspora—about six million “overseas contract workers” scattered around the planet—is radically configuring the Filipino presence and potential for change in the U.S. Subsumed before in the category of immigrants, exiles, refugees, etc., Filipinos now claim a nationalitarian, uniquely political/ethical identity removed from panethnic racializing generalities. Filipinos in their singular diversity are reassessing their colonial past and engaging in projects of popular-democratic resistance (of which this work is one) to the transnational system of global commodification.This book examines the received textbook dogmas about the Filipino community before World War II and after. It questions the claims about Filipino assimilation and acculturation, focusing on their encounter with “white supremacy” in various forms. Through analysis and interpretation of imaginative texts and other discursive practices, From Exile to Diaspora seeks to establish a new framework for charting Filipino agency within the constraints of late capitalism. It seeks to open up for laypersons and students of U.S. social history the question of racial justice and equality. San Juan hopes this book will serve as a guide to understanding the nuances of Filipino self-identification in the process of challenging the dominant polity's claim to pluralist and multicultural heterogeneity.


About the author: E. San Juan is Director of the Philippines Cultural Studies Center in Storrs, Connecticut. He was recently chair of the Department of Comparative American Cultures and professor of Ethnic Studies, Bowling Green State University, Ohio. He was previously visiting professor of English and Comparative Literature at the University of Trento, Italy, and Tamkang University, Taiwan. His most recent books are: Beyond Postcolonial Theory , From Exile to Diaspora , After Postcolonialism , and Racism and Cultural Studies . He received a Centennial Award from the Philippines Cultural Center in 1999. E. San Juan is Director of the Philippines Cultural Studies Center in Storrs, Connecticut. He was recently chair of the Department of Comparative American Cultures and professor of Ethnic Studies, Bowling Green State University, Ohio. He was previously visiting professor of English and Comparative Literature at the University of Trento, Italy, and Tamkang University, Taiwan. His most recent books are: Beyond Postcolonial Theory , From Exile to Diaspora , After Postcolonialism , and Racism and Cultural Studies . He received a Centennial Award from the Philippines Cultural Center in 1999.
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