The Accidental Asian by Eric Liu
Notes of a Native Speaker (Vintage)

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Beyond black and white, native and alien, lies a vast and fertile field of human experience. It is here that Eric Liu, former speechwriter for President Clinton and noted political commentator, invites us to explore.

In these compellingly candid essays, Liu reflects on his life as a second-generation Chinese American and reveals the shifting frames of ethnic identity. Finding himself unable to read a Chinese memorial book about his father's life, he looks critically at the cost of his own assimilation. But he casts an equally questioning eye on the effort to sustain vast racial categories like “Asian American.” And as he surveys the rising anxiety about China's influence, Liu illuminates the space that Asians have always occupied in the American imagination. Reminiscent of the work of James Baldwin and its unwavering honesty, The Accidental Asian introduces a powerful and elegant voice into the discussion of what it means to be an American.

From the Trade Paperback edition.

About Eric Liu

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Eric Liu teaches at the University of Washington's Evans School of Public Affairs. Nick Hanauer cofounded the League of Education Voters in Washington State. Both live in Seattle.
Published December 18, 2007 by Vintage. 218 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, Political & Social Sciences, Literature & Fiction. Non-fiction

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Provocative musings on the subjects of race and identity from the perspective of a second-generation Chinese professional.

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