Are you Asian Enough? Guerrant

Across the Asian sphere whether or not you are in an Asian nation or descendant of it the concept of being Asian has been defended by fundamentalist often for the sake of cultural purity. Terms may differ from Halfu to mestizo, mixedness within the Asian community has always been in different forms of scrutiny, but some more harsh than others. In Japan, whose cultural identity is considered sacred to them, mixedness whether that is blood or by culture is always looked down upon and individuals who identified as mixed often have to fight tooth and nail to be affirmed as a part of the Japanese culture. The Philippines on the contrary has a long history of ethnic and cultural mixing with even the present Filipino culture that Spanish, American, and Chinese factors are common in the day to day. Mixed people in the Philippines or even those abroad are still considered Filipino even if they do not speak the language. This one drop rule of the Philippines in comparison to ethnic purity stance of Japan, another pacific island nation, gives demonstration of how the people determine the ethnicity of an individual not just their blood or their language. In darker complexion countries like the Philippines or Thailand, being mixed is still being a part of the greater society and not just an outsider. As a half Filipino, I feel this completely true for I may be a half-black and half-Filipino who lives in the states, but I still feel strongly with my cultural heritage and accepted as Asian. Cultural nationalism is a construct that tries to define and protect a hierarchal model of what is pure and who is one of us. Many people may pick Asian on a census, but are they truly accepted as Asian. For that question, it depends on the people of who you are mixed with, but at the end of the day you determine your identity.


  2 comments for “Are you Asian Enough? Guerrant

  1. Kristen Barrett
    April 11, 2020 at 2:14 am

    Hi Jaelen! Thank you for your post. I find the idea of blood quantums very interesting, especially now that people can learn so much more about their cultural heritage/lineage. I believe that we are moving in a direction where most individuals in the United States will have parents of different races, so I am intrigued to see how the generation after us contends with the idea of race and ethnicity.

  2. sk7jy
    April 18, 2020 at 11:13 pm

    Hey Jaelen, love the idea you chose and how you have a deep connection with the issue! Your blog post makes me think about how physically having a different or in my view, a unique appearance is most of the time seen as a social deviator. The issues in the Japan you listed made me think about the United States during this pandemic. Multiple instance of people with low incomes and poor healthcare are suffering because the wealthy and popular are getting priority. Today on my Instagram, I saw a video of a woman relaying her story with her sister, who passed away from the virus and how she was receiving such poor hospital care in New York.

    Just seeing how treatment relates to money and not saving lives is truly a scary factor that our society is emphasizing. The systems in place in the United States like in Japan help to single out people of color or in your case, the mixed culture/ethnicity community. The ones at a disadvantage before and during the crisis are people of color, incarcerated, and the poor. Aid should not be limited to certain requirements but to act on the act of solidarity. We as a community need to become closer by seeing that differences only make people more unique!

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