Edited by Cathy J. Schlund-Vials, Guy Beauregard, and Hsiu-chuan Lee, With an Afterword by Madeleine Thien
Here is how the editors summarize my chapter in this book:
The editors best summarize Fukushima’s chapter: “Annie Isabel Fukushima concludes this section with an ambitious critical account of “tethered subjectivities” spanning Asia, the Pacific Islands, and the continental United States. Her essay begins with the Korean operated Daewoosa factory in American Samoa, a site where trafficked migrant workers from Vietnam and China worked alongside Samoan workers. While the owner of this factory was eventually convicted and sentenced to forty years in prison, Fukushima nevertheless reads this case as a failure to facilitate human rights in the Asia-Pacific region insofar as it affirmed, rather than contested, U.S. colonial presence in the region. Extending her discussion to address what she calls “factories, farms, and fisheries”— encompassing, among other subjects, Thai farm workers in Hawaii and the story of Sonny, a fisher from Indonesia whose journey took him to Australia, Fiji, American Samoa, and eventually California—Fukushima foregrounds key moments in the history of U.S. imperialism and colonial rule, including California’s 1850 “Act for the Government and Protection of Indians,” the annexation of Hawaii in 1898, and the partitioning of the Samoan archipelago in 1899. In doing so, her essay tracks how rights-based forms of subjectivity are inextricably tied to settler-colonial logics. Drawing on the work of Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak, Fukushima proposes the notion of “hacking” as a way of undoing discourses of human trafficking and human rights, urging us to envision new ways to challenge rights violations that do not, at the same time, affirm U.S. settler-colonial presence” – (Schlund-Vials et al., 2019, p. 12).
Publication: Dec 19
Publication: Dec 19
Publication: Dec 19
Considers the ways Asian American studies has engaged with humanitarian crises and large-scale violations
Description of the book
Human rights violations have always been part of Asian American studies. From Chinese immigration restrictions, the incarceration of Japanese Americans, yellow peril characterizations, and recent acts of deportation and Islamophobia, Asian Americans have consistently functioned as subordinated “subjects” of human rights violations. The Subject(s) of Human Rights brings together scholars from North America and Asia to recalibrate these human rights concerns from both sides of the Pacific.
The essays in this collection provide a sharper understanding of how Asian/Americans have been subjected to human rights violations, how they act as subjects of history and agents of change, and how they produce knowledge around such subjects. The editors of and contributors to The Subject(s) of Human Rights examine refugee narratives, human trafficking, and citizenship issues in twentieth- and twenty-first century literature. These themes further refract issues of American war-making, settler colonialism, military occupation, collateral damage, and displacement that relocate the imagined geographies of Asian America from the periphery to the center of human rights critique.
Contributors: Annie Isabel Fukushima, Mayumo Inoue, Masumi Izumi, Dinidu Karunanayake, Christine Kim, Min-Jung Kim, Christopher Lee, Vinh Nguyen, Christopher B. Patterson, Madeleine Thien, Yin Wang, Grace Hui-chuan Wu, and the editors
In the Series
Asian American History and Culture edited by Cathy Schlund-Vials, Rick Bonus, and Shelley Sang-Hee Lee Founded by Sucheng Chan in 1991, the Asian American History and Culture series has sponsored innovative scholarship that has redefined, expanded, and advanced the field of Asian American studies while strengthening its links to related areas of scholarly inquiry and engaged critique. Like the field from which it emerged, the series remains rooted in the social sciences and humanities, encompassing multiple regions, formations, communities, and identities. Extending the vision of founding editor Sucheng Chan and emeriti editor Michael Omi, David Palumbo-Liu, K. Scott Wong and Linda Trinh Võ, series editors Cathy Schlund-Vials, Rick Bonus, and Shelley Sang-Hee Lee continue to develop a foundational collection that embodies a range of theoretical and methodological approaches to Asian American studies.