Racial Analogies and Asian American Speculative Fictions
This chapter explores the ways two speculative fictions function through racial analogies. Claire Light's “Abducted by Aliens!” and Ted Chiang's The Merchant and the Alchemist's Gate, though narrated by characters who exist in fantastical landscapes filled with alchemy, time traveling, or alien invaders, can be interpreted through their oblique relationship to external social contexts and historical archives. “Abducted by Aliens!” demonstrates how the alien-abduction narrative can be analogized to the experience of Japanese American internees, while Chiang's novelette shows how an oriental tale set in the Islamic Golden Age can be analogized to American foreign policy in the post-9/11 era. Both works provide dramatic examples of the Asian American writer who makes imaginative use of narrative perspective but whose fictional worlds can be firmly tethered to material and historical contexts.
NYU Press Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.
If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.
To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs, and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.