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Chino: Anti-Chinese Racism in Mexico, 1880-1940

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From the late nineteenth century to the 1930s, antichinismo --the politics of racism against Chinese Mexicans--found potent expression in Mexico. Jason Oliver Chang delves into the untold story of how antichinismo helped the revolutionary Mexican state, and the elite in control, of it build their nation. As Chang shows, anti-Chinese politics shared intimate bonds with a ro From the late nineteenth century to the 1930s, antichinismo --the politics of racism against Chinese Mexicans--found potent expression in Mexico. Jason Oliver Chang delves into the untold story of how antichinismo helped the revolutionary Mexican state, and the elite in control, of it build their nation. As Chang shows, anti-Chinese politics shared intimate bonds with a romantic ideology that surrounded the transformation of the mass indigenous peasantry into dignified mestizos. Racializing a Chinese Other became instrumental in organizing the political power and resources for winning Mexico's revolutionary war, building state power, and seizing national hegemony in order to dominate the majority Indian population. By centering the Chinese in the drama of Mexican history, Chang opens up a fascinating untold story about the ways antichinismo was embedded within Mexico's revolutionary national state and its ideologies. Groundbreaking and boldly argued, Chino is a first-of-its-kind look at the essential role the Chinese played in Mexican culture and politics.


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From the late nineteenth century to the 1930s, antichinismo --the politics of racism against Chinese Mexicans--found potent expression in Mexico. Jason Oliver Chang delves into the untold story of how antichinismo helped the revolutionary Mexican state, and the elite in control, of it build their nation. As Chang shows, anti-Chinese politics shared intimate bonds with a ro From the late nineteenth century to the 1930s, antichinismo --the politics of racism against Chinese Mexicans--found potent expression in Mexico. Jason Oliver Chang delves into the untold story of how antichinismo helped the revolutionary Mexican state, and the elite in control, of it build their nation. As Chang shows, anti-Chinese politics shared intimate bonds with a romantic ideology that surrounded the transformation of the mass indigenous peasantry into dignified mestizos. Racializing a Chinese Other became instrumental in organizing the political power and resources for winning Mexico's revolutionary war, building state power, and seizing national hegemony in order to dominate the majority Indian population. By centering the Chinese in the drama of Mexican history, Chang opens up a fascinating untold story about the ways antichinismo was embedded within Mexico's revolutionary national state and its ideologies. Groundbreaking and boldly argued, Chino is a first-of-its-kind look at the essential role the Chinese played in Mexican culture and politics.

36 review for Chino: Anti-Chinese Racism in Mexico, 1880-1940

  1. 5 out of 5

    Sarah

    From an interview with the author: "Racism is most effective when non-whites practice it against each other. It becomes a part of their own subjugation. That’s the core of what I wanted to show. I didn’t want to write just about the Chinese being persecuted. Antichinismo fucked up Mexican people too. Fucked them up hard. And that’s the tragedy of it: no one won. No one gained from this. It was bad for everyone." http://remezcla.com/features/culture/... From an interview with the author: "Racism is most effective when non-whites practice it against each other. It becomes a part of their own subjugation. That’s the core of what I wanted to show. I didn’t want to write just about the Chinese being persecuted. Antichinismo fucked up Mexican people too. Fucked them up hard. And that’s the tragedy of it: no one won. No one gained from this. It was bad for everyone." http://remezcla.com/features/culture/...

  2. 5 out of 5

    Tiffany

    I was super excited to read this book because there is so little literature on Asians in Latin America, and while I am still grateful for this uncovering, there is a effort to tell a story of Chinese victimhood that I think obscures other aspects that could have been useful in telling the full story. For one, Chang mentions South Asians a few times in the book, but never goes into much detail. Obviously with skin tone it is easy to racialize Chinese Asians and South Asians differently, I was a l I was super excited to read this book because there is so little literature on Asians in Latin America, and while I am still grateful for this uncovering, there is a effort to tell a story of Chinese victimhood that I think obscures other aspects that could have been useful in telling the full story. For one, Chang mentions South Asians a few times in the book, but never goes into much detail. Obviously with skin tone it is easy to racialize Chinese Asians and South Asians differently, I was a little disappointed to see no critical engagement with this segment of the population. Furthermore, while this was definitely discussed, I feel like Chang did not treat the subject of anti-Indigeneity with the amount of care that this book probably necessitated. Although antichinismo was part of an effort to incorporate Indigenous peoples into Mexican culture through intermarriage and the creation of a mestizo identity, this also was predicated on the goal of diluting Indigenous blood. Again, this was mentioned, but I felt that the way Chang emphasized the idea of Indigenous folx being mixed into society brushed off the deep violence that is forcing Indigenous people to assimilate to suit the colonizers' interests. All in all, this book is very important in beginning to uncover the formerly invisibilized narratives of Chinese Mexicans, but there is a lot more nuance needed for a just history.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Miyako Martinez

  4. 5 out of 5

    vicente elizondo

  5. 4 out of 5

    Coly Chau

  6. 4 out of 5

    Jenny

  7. 5 out of 5

    Theresa Arias

  8. 4 out of 5

    Mary Xiao

  9. 4 out of 5

    Chels

  10. 5 out of 5

    Anna G

  11. 5 out of 5

    Kathy

  12. 4 out of 5

    Alicia

  13. 4 out of 5

    Junior

  14. 4 out of 5

    Elis

  15. 4 out of 5

    Jonathan Navas

  16. 4 out of 5

    Aziza Mehmoudzai

  17. 5 out of 5

    Enrique

  18. 5 out of 5

    River

  19. 4 out of 5

    Hamza

  20. 5 out of 5

    Adam Azeris

  21. 4 out of 5

    Iris

  22. 4 out of 5

    fox

  23. 4 out of 5

    Tri M. Vo

  24. 4 out of 5

    Grecia Elena

  25. 5 out of 5

    Sylvia

  26. 4 out of 5

    Elizabeth

  27. 4 out of 5

    Jake

  28. 4 out of 5

    Becky Lee

  29. 4 out of 5

    Ana Chacon

  30. 5 out of 5

    Cassandra

  31. 5 out of 5

    Alejandro Granados

  32. 4 out of 5

    Omar Holguin

  33. 4 out of 5

    Audrey

  34. 5 out of 5

    Victoria

  35. 5 out of 5

    Seth Rumbley

  36. 5 out of 5

    Arturo Carlos

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