In this Book

But Still Like Air
summary
In this pathbreaking volume, Velina Hasu Houston gathers together eleven plays that speak in the "hybridized, unique American voices of Asian descent -- and often dissent." These writers resist the bigotry that attempts to target them solely as people of color as well as the homogenizing tendencies of a multiculturalism that fails to recognize the varied make-up of Asian America. Anthologized for the first time, these plays testify to the rich complexity of Asian American experience while they also demonstrate the different styles and thematic concerns of the individual playwrights.

What are Asian American plays about? Family conflicts, sexuality, social upheaval, betrayal ... the stuff of all drama. Whether the characters are a middle-aged Taiwanese woman who is married to an Irish American and who dreams of opening a Chinese restaurant, a Chinese American female bond trader trying to survive a corporate takeover, or an ABC (American Born Chinese) gay man whose lover has AIDS, their Asian-ness is only a part of their story.

As a playwright, Houston is keenly aware of the rigid formulas that often exclude writers of color and women women writers from mainstream theater. But Still, Like air, I'll Rise brings forth vibrant new work that challenges producers and audiences to broaden their expectations, to attend to the unfamiliar voices that expresses the universal and particular vision of Asian American playwrights.

Table of Contents

  1. Cover
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  1. Frontmatter
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  1. Contents
  2. p. vii
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  1. Foreword
  2. pp. ix-xi
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  1. Acknowledgments
  2. p. xiii
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  1. Introduction
  2. pp. xv-xvii
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  1. Talk-Story
  2. pp. 1-47
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  1. Day Standing on Its Head
  2. pp. 49-87
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  1. Kokoro (True Heart)
  2. pp. 89-129
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  1. Dance of the Wandering Souls
  2. pp. 131-156
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  1. Bondage
  2. pp. 157-177
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  1. The Conversion of Ka'ahumanu
  2. pp. 179-225
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  1. Cleveland Raining
  2. pp. 227-270
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  1. Breaking Glass
  2. pp. 271-330
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  1. Junk Bonds
  2. pp. 331-393
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  1. Kimchee and Chitlins
  2. pp. 395-450
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  1. A Language of Their Own
  2. pp. 451-513
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  1. About the Contributors
  2. pp. 515-520
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