Contemporary Asian America (third edition)

A Multidisciplinary Reader

688 pages

5 figures, 1 halftone, 25 tables

April, 2016

ISBN: 9781479826223



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Min Zhou is Tan Lark Sye Chair Professor of Sociology and Director of the Chinese Heritage Centre, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore, as well as Professor of Sociology and Asian American Studies and Walter and Shirley Wang Endowed Chair in U.S.-China Relations and Communications, UCLA. She is the author of Contemporary Chinese America and co-author of The Asian American Achievement Paradox. 

All books by Min Zhou

Anthony C. Ocampo is Assistant Professor of Sociology at California State Polytechnic University-Pomona and a Ford Foundation Postdoctoral Fellow at the UC Riverside School of Public Policy. He is the author of The Latinos of Asia: How Filipinos Break the Rules of Race.

All books by Anthony C. Ocampo

Who are Asian Americans? Moving beyond popular stereotypes of the “model minority” or “forever foreigner,” most Americans know surprisingly little of the nation’s fastest growing minority population. Since the 1960s, when different Asian immigrant groups came together under the “Asian American” umbrella, they have tirelessly carved out their presence in the labor market, education, politics, and pop culture. Many times, they have done so in the face of racism, discrimination, sexism, homophobia, and socioeconomic disadvantage. Today, contemporary Asian America has emerged as an incredibly diverse population, with each segment of the community facing its unique challenges.


When Contemporary Asian America was first published in 2000, it exposed its readers to the formation and development of Asian American studies as an academic field of study, from its inception as part of the ethnic consciousness movement of the 1960s to the systematic inquiry into more contemporary theoretical and practical issues facing Asian America at the century’s end. It was the first volume to integrate a broad range of interdisciplinary research and approaches from a social science perspective to assess the effects of immigration, community development, and socialization on Asian American communities. This updated third edition discusses the impact of September 11 on Asian American identity and citizenship; the continued influence of globalization on past and present waves of immigration; and the intersection of race, gender, sexuality, and class on the experiences of Asian immigrants and their children. The volume also provides study questions and recommended supplementary readings and documentary films. This critical text offers a broad overview of Asian American studies and the current state of Asian America.


  • “A thoughtfully assembled collection of readings that carefully brings together central themes in Asian American Studies.  A great resource for those looking for a lively introduction to the field.”

    —Nazli Kibria, Boston University

  • "Brings together some of the most important scholarship in Asian American Studies. Contemporary Asian America  is a superbly organized anthology, presenting topics ranging from immigration, family, and community to activism, identity, sexuality, race relations and transnationalism. The new research and updated materials on previously understudied Asian ethnic groups are most valuable. Anyone interested in the experiences of Asians in the United States will find much here that is illuminating. The breadth and depth of this volume makes it an excellent reader for undergraduate and graduate level courses in Asian American Studies."

    —Xiaojian Zhao, University of California, Santa Barbara