- Legacies of the "Innocent" Frontier: Failed Memory and the Infantilized Filipina Expatriate in Jessica Hagedorn's Dogeaters
- Journal of Asian American Studies
- Johns Hopkins University Press
- Volume 7, Number 1, February 2004
- pp. 27-50
- View Citation
- Additional Information
This article focuses on the ways that Jessica Hagedorn uses the trope of childhood innocence to appropriate President William McKinley's infantilizing rhetoric of colonialism. Through her expatriate narrator's nostalgia for an innocent Philippines populated by childlike characters, Hagedorn cedes authentic history to the corrosive powers of assimilationism and consumerism. Along with the possibilities for a knowable history, however, Dogeaters also forsakes the comforts innocent "memories." The novel ends by accepting multiple stories of history's loss instead.