By Tseen-Ling Khoo
This paintings offers a examining of east Asian-Australian and East Asian-Canadian novels whereas addressing the literary and political cultures of Australia and Canada. It examines those diasporic literatures in multicultural societies and their placement relating to nationwide literatures.
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Extra info for Banana Bending: Asian-Australian and Asian-Canadian Literatures
These pohcies recognise the importance of equity in society through practical (funded) means, and this ' t o p - d o w n ' approach is crucial for some aspects of creative pursuits, particularly in estabhshment phases That is, while the Canadian government could certainly be more responsive to and thorough at following through on anti-racist rhetoric, it is a valuable starting point As the Canadian examples discussed in this chapter demonstrate, the creative possibilities for racial minority artists are heightened by their validation as cultural citizens and political entities.
T h e 'ambassadorial' role for certain classes of Asian-Canadians is explicit in the issues around the H o n g Kong 'monster house' stories m Vancouver as well as the emphasis on Asia-Pacific trade and the abilities of certain 'Canadians' (that is, of Asian descent) to contribute to the gross national product. Critics agree that the differences in implementation of Canada's and Australia's multiculturalism are most apparent when levels of language and community recognition are considered "Spitting in the Soup" Asian-Canadian Space 31 While Australia has ongoing black-white tensions, the situation in Canada is further complicated by three parties: A n g l o - , Franco-, and Native Canadians.
Once the social and literary conditions in Australia are contextuahsed, the subsequent examinations of various texts can engage more constructively with particular Asian-Australian perspectives. It is not enough to only 'clear space' for Asian-Australian writers in literary arenas. Studies must also focus on the politics of those spaces and the processes for using, exploiting, and/ or expanding them T h e way in which discursive threads used to describe and signify the 'Asian Other' in Austraha has influenced the reading/writing of Asian-Australian literature.