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Interracial EncountersReciprocal Representations in African and Asian American Literatures, 1896-1937$
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Julia H. Lee

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780814752555

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: March 2016

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9780814752555.001.0001

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(p.1) 1 Introduction
Interracial Encounters

Julia H. Lee

NYU Press

This introductory chapter states how the book elaborates the grand narratives of interracial relations by emphasizing the fact that Afro-Asian relations actually have a long and densely complicated history, and that these relationships have been all-inclusive in their politics. The chapter details the historical context of early twentieth-century America's troubled and multifaceted pairing of African and Asian bodies in various legal, cultural, political, and scientific discourses and how it maintained the racial exclusivity of American identity. At the same time, this pairing embodies the nation's general apprehension about the racialized body's relationship to American identity. This study also intends to capture how various racialized groups were influenced by each other in their struggles to negotiate the reality of the nation's exclusionary nature and in their imagining of political structures that might resolve that injustice.

Keywords:   interracial relations, Afro-Asian relations, American identity, racial exclusivity, racialized groups

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