- Editor's Preface
In both the personal and the collective relationships between human beings, perception's influence often matches that of reality. Models of assimilation as an erosive force can cloud fundamental interpretations of social interaction and strategies for improving quality of life. Competing memories and silences can reinforce wrong-headed histories and obscure the elements that shape identity. Perceived encounters with discrimination, even if misunderstood, can damage self-image as well as distort notions of place and privilege. Representations of the "real" can amend experience in ways that discount the resilience of community.
The authors whose work is featured in this issue of JAAS weave the strands of reality and perception with an artisan's insight. Xuanning Fu and Melanie E. Hatfield present a study of intermarriage patterns among five Asian American ethnic groups, discovering a complex web of segmented and classic assimilation patterns. Jodi Kim interrogates two pieces of Korean American fiction, drawing from them the inter-workings of empire, gender, and race in shaping Korean American identity. Diditi Mitra articulates the aspirations and frustrations of Punjabi American taxi drivers as they employ "model minority" stereotypes in navigating the currents of economic and social opportunity. Ty Phu examines the quintessential medium of perception by laying beside one another three photographic visions of Japanese American internment. Together, these [End Page v] articles offer a richly provocative and diverse engagement with the Asian American experience. [End Page vi]