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Limning Asian American Literature with Social Generationality: Violence and Subversion


Kim, Joseph H. (2024) Limning Asian American Literature with Social Generationality: Violence and Subversion. Senior thesis (Major), California Institute of Technology. doi:10.7907/4b17-ek62.


The existence and identity of the Asian American literary canon have been contentious, and thus so have the methods to study it. Operating with a capacious definition of the Asian American literary canon, I argue the canon exists as a vast heterogeneous one encapsulating the diverse experiences of Asian Americans over generations. I apply a longitudinal study of selected works of the Asian American literary canon and adapt a queer reading hermeneutic to identify forms of literary dissent. Applying social generationality (generational identity) and the hermeneutic in reading the canon illuminates a pattern of socially imposed violences and quasi-queer acts of literary subversion. Ultimately, reading the canon vis-à-vis social generationality illustrates the evolution of Asian American experiences via the evolution of their perceived violences and modes of persistence.

Item Type:Thesis (Senior thesis (Major))
Subject Keywords:Asian American Literature ; Social Generationality ; Violence and Subversion
Degree Grantor:California Institute of Technology
Division:Humanities and Social Sciences
Major Option:English
Thesis Availability:Public (worldwide access)
Research Advisor(s):
  • Murphy, Dana
Thesis Committee:
  • None, None
Defense Date:19 March 2024
Record Number:CaltechTHESIS:03202024-022831525
Persistent URL:
Kim, Joseph H.0009-0000-8633-0833
Default Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:16336
Deposited By: Joseph Kim
Deposited On:20 Mar 2024 17:28
Last Modified:20 Mar 2024 17:32

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