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Talk: The Making of a Chinese American Community in Boston, 1870-1965
Date: 7 April 2010 

School of Modern Languages and Cultures Seminar Series in conjunction with Hong Kong Institute for the Humanities and Social Sciences (Incorporating the Centre of Asian Studies) cordially invite you to attend the following talk:

American Studies Seminar Series

Defying Exclusion: The Making of a Chinese American Community in Boston, 1870-1965

Dr. Wing-kai To
(Bridgewater State College and Fulbright Scholar, American Studies, HKU)

Date: 7 April 2010 (Wednesday)
Time: 4:30 pm - 6:00 pm
Venue: Convocation Room, Main Building

The seminar will explore the development of transnational resources and local culture in shaping the roles of Chinese American community in Boston from the late 19th to the mid-20th centuries.  By utilizing both western accounts in the press and missionary writings as well as local Chinese records, it reveals that Chinese in Boston were able to develop their own school and community associations after an initial period of exclusion.  The talk will compare several historical accounts and episodes of Boston Chinatown in 1892, 1905, 1931, and 1952 in examining the evolution of the perceptions and roles of their community. Instead of addressing the more conventional legal and political perspectives of exclusion, Wing-kai To argues that the local Chinatown utilized both traditional Chinese and modern American networks in enhancing their community resources and social capital. These community building efforts allowed local Chinese to build coalitions and stage protests to withstand the challenges of social exclusion and environmental degradation in the process of urban renewal.

About the speaker:
Dr. Wing-kai To is a Fulbright Visiting Scholar in the American Studies Program at the University of Hong Kong for spring and summer 2010. He is currently teaching at Bridgewater State College in Massachusetts as a professor of History and Director of Asian and Asian American Studies. He is the author of Chinese in Boston, 1870-1965 (2008) and other studies of Chinatown in Boston.

All are welcome. No registration is required.

For enquiries, please contact Dr Marie Berne,

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