Reading Journal, Transnational Femininity Class Transnational Femininities, Freshman Reading Journal

474 words - 2 pages

ASIAN AMERICAN WOMEN AND RACIALIZED FEMININITIES “Doing” Gender across Cultural Worlds, the title of this piece refers to the system of ethnic and mainstream settings and how is it for racialised femininities across cultural backgrounds and settings. “Doing” symbolises that gender has to be carried out as some kind of burden or responsibility and the experiences of the same in the lives of racialised femininities across the cultural world. The subject of this investigation were 100 daughters of Korean and Vietnamese immigrants. The Asian and Asian American worlds are looked at as being patriarchal and resistant to change while America is seen as the epitome of gender equality. Ethnicity has constructed the image of hegemonic and subordinated femininities, this image diminishes Asian forms of gender reflecting that the social injustice has led to rise of ethnicity, being the root cause of the issue. It creates division amongst people giving one of the groups or more the sense of superiority. White dominance has led to the rise of denigration and rejection of ethnic Asian culture. There is a social constructionist approach to the production of gender and race within the environment of oppression.
Key Quotes
· According to this work, gender is not a unitary process. Rather, it is splintered by overlapping layers of inequality into multiple forms of masculinities (and femininities) that are both internally and externally relational and hierarchical
· Hegemonic masculinity is centred on men’s global domination of women, and because there is no configuration of femininity organized around women’s domination of men
Reflect and Respond
I personally agree with the argument of Johnson and Pyke, there is discrimination based on ethnicity and then there is the presence of “hegemonic masculity”. This ascendant masculinity is “organized around the symbolic equation of masculinity and power. It is an ideal type that is glorified and associated with white men at the highest levels of society, although few actually possess the associated traits.” While on the other hand the work concerning the effects of controlling images and the relational construction of subordinated and hegemonic femininities has mostly been theoretical. Racialized images and the construction of hegemonic (white) and subordinated (Asian) forms of gender set up a situation where Asian American women feel they must choose between white worlds of gender equity and Asian worlds of gender oppression. The construction of a hegemonic femininity (re)creates a hierarchy and privileges white women over Asian American women. oppression evades the meanings individuals give to their experiences. I personally condemn any forms of racial discrimination and the concept of white women supremacy. I feel strongly against firstly, hegemonic masculity and then hegemonic femininity based on ethnicities.
Discussion questions
· What are the criteria for the ‘subordinate’ or the ‘dominant’ position in context with race, gender or ethnicity?
· Is a social constructionist approach towards race and gender helpful?


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