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Love Across Borders: Asian Americans, Race, and the Politics of Intermarriage and Family-Making
By Kelly H. Chong, Professor and Chair of Sociology, University of Kansas
Thursday, May 6, 2021, 7 PM CT, via Zoom
Despite the historic sanctions in the United States against intermarriage, Asian Americans now have one of the highest rates of intermarriage. This trend has been viewed by many as an indicator that Asian-Americans are "successfully" assimilating, possibly signaling their social acceptance as well as their own desire to adopt white middle class culture. Drawing on extensive qualitative data of intermarried Asian American couples, Kelly H. Chong discusses the real-life complexities that challenges such assumptions.
In this talk, Dr. Chong addresses what motivates marital boundary crossings, what occurs inside these marriages once couples start families, and what race has to do with these processes. She focuses on the cultural forces, particularly racial imageries, that condition the desires and marital choices of individuals and what role such imageries may play in the process of family making. Far from being the end point of assimilation, Chong explores how these marriages are a complicated terrain of life-long identity struggles and of cultural re-construction for Asian Americans.
Sponsored by the KU Center for East Asian Studies.