Hyphen: Issue 15 Preview: Boundless Journey

Monday, August 11, 2008

If you're interested in checking out the new issue of Hyphen Magazine but aren't sure if you should still pick it up (because we all like to window shop) you can check out a preview if you're so inclined:

Reading this issue’s feature, “Across Asian Middle America,” reminded me of my experience growing up. My hometown of Woodland, CA, while not as isolated as some of the locales in our story, might as well have been on another planet from San Francisco, the Asian American mecca 90 minutes away.

You could count on one hand the number of Asian American families in Woodland, where I grew up on a Chinese vegetable farm (See “Growing Up With Gai Lan,” Issue 2). I experienced the feelings of isolation and anguish expressed in this issue’s vignettes of places like Greenville, SC, Montgomery, AL, and Laramie, WY.

When I go back to Woodland these days, it’s a little jarring for me to see so many Asian American faces. Like many places, Woodland has changed. It’s really not so shocking anymore for there to be sizeable populations of Asian Americans in small-town Central California, the Deep South or the Midwest. While not completely out of the margins, many of the old archetypes for Asian Americans have been broken. That’s why we wanted to take a Road Trip with this issue—to take a glimpse at where Asian Americans have gone.
For the full text and preview, go here.