The Accidental Asian By Eric Liu Essay

765 Words Nov 30th, 2016 4 Pages
Sometimes I am curious about what the many different groups of minorities feel like in the United States. For example, their struggles, emotions, and actions they choose to make while trying to adjust to a new environment. Eric Liu’s memoir The Accidental Asian demonstrates just that. It depicts the double consciousness, social structures, instances of identity confusion, and the agency a second-generation Chinese American experiences.
In high school, he experiences the social structure of beauty standards. For the first time, Eric became aware that, “bangs were no longer the look for boys.” He began to hold himself negatively accountable for having a bowl cut that he felt was still a satisfactory look for him. This exerted a force on his life because he felt he was, “lingering near the bottom,” of the “height-weight-physique distribution” of the other boys in his class. Therefore, choosing to uphold these standards by altering his hair, he was doing gender the way a teenage boy would.
When looking at his parent’s agency, though not related to total institutions, they would not have traditional authority that a stereotypical Chinese family would have. He says they weren’t status-obsessed, strict, and were “haphazard about passing down ancestral traditions.” They passed down more stereotypical American values instead such as, allowing their kids to pick and choose which aspects of which cultures to be a part of and experience. For example, it was evident why he no longer…

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