Rachel Lee: The Exuisite Corpse of Asian America



This was much of a ifficult book to read than I anticipated Mostly because I knew nothing about this book but that the title was intriguing An exuisite corpse How Asian Americans enact body politics Sign me up What I Men And Gods In Mongolia didn t anticipate was the sometimes repetitive statements of theory Iid not need to be told so many times that Margaret Cho was enacting an explosive politics around her puss. The Exuisite Corpse of Asian America addresses this central uestion if race has been settled as a legal or social construction and not as biological fact why Hunter Killer (Pike Logan do Asian American artists authors and performers continue to scrutinize their body parts Engaging novels poetry theater and new media from both the US and internationally such as Kazuo Ishiguro’s science fiction novel Never Let Me Go or Ruth Ozeki’s My Year of Meats and exhibits like that of Body Worlds in which many of the bodies onisplay originated from Chinese prisons Rachel

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And I m sure in the other chapters This was an excellent introduction to body politics and I ve started binge reading that This was also an excellent compilation of Asian American art and aesthetic Even if some of the included books were only briefly mentioned My Year in Meats specifically Lee was able to compile an overwhelming amount of fascinating and Asian American produced art literature. Ality the ivergent scales of embodiment and the ueer crossspecies being of racial subjects She establishes an intellectual alliance and methodological synergy between Asian American studies and Science and Technology Studies STS biocultures medical humanities and femiueer approaches to family formation carework affect and ethics In pursuing an Asian Americanist critiue concerned with speculative and real changes to human biologies she both produces innovation within the field and The Friend Zone demonstrates the urgency of that critiue to otherisciplines.

Y just the once and then move on Likewise the ways in which her standup enacted good parenthood vs bad parenthood and how her minority body plays into her Flying Scotsman Manual desire to have a child Or her explosive genitalia Did I mention that I bring up Cho specifically because Rachel Lee mentions her in all parts of the book the introduction the chapter specifically on her stand up the conclusion the tail end. Lee teases out the preoccupation with human fragments and posthuman ecologies in the context of Asian American cultural production and theory She unpacks how theesignation of “Asian American” itself is a mental construct that is paradoxically linked to the biological bodyThrough chapters that each use a body part as springboard forreading Asian American texts Lee inaugurates a new avenue of research on biosociality and biopolitics within Asian American criticism focused on the literary and cultural understandings of pastoral government.

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