Currently, therefore, I have some general ideas about my project in this class.
I want to do a comparative literature study on Muslin Funeral by Huo Da published in 1988 and James Baldwin’s Notes of a Native Son. The major aspects that I will focus on is the messages presented by narrative and how the racial and ethnical backgrounds influence narrative. Narrative theory, rhetorical theory and racial ethnical writing theory will be collaboratively used in the project.
Although I was taught from kindergarten that there are 55 minority groups in China and heard random tales from my primary school class teacher about her Hui (a Chinese minority group that is mostly distinguished by their islamic belief) student who doesn’t eat meat offered by school cafeteria, it was not until my sophomore year in high school when I met my first minority friend, a Hui Chinese, that my vague impression about race and ethnicity started to emerge. What motivated me to focus more on racial and ethnical problems about reading and writing was a image presented in James Baldwin’s personal Essay Notes of a Native Son:
“I don’t know what was going on in my mind, either; I certainly had no conscious plan. I wanted to do something to crush these white faces, which were crushing me.”
While completely enthralled by this powerful image, I started to think about how the presentation of narrative, language, images are presented as a result of racial and ethnical backgrounds.
I want to do a research on how nationalism and racism are presented in discourses in China and how Chinese diplomatic discourses are written in order to appease the tension between different races and ethnic groups in China.
As a homogenous country, China has the racial and ethnical problem as complicated as the the United States. Racial and ethnical discrimination is also rampant in China as well. As Chinese scholar Yinghong Cheng pointed out in his research From Campus Racism to Cyber Racism: Discourse of Race and Chinese Nationalism, a nationalistic discourse that emphasize on a “racial Purity” and “continuation of Chinese” is continuously presented as patriotism in Chinese education and pop culture.
I want to write a personal narrative about my experience as a Chinese being exposed in a multi-racial, multi-ethnical, multi-cultural environment.
From a part of majority group to a member of minority in a different country, from a racially homogenous country to a immigrant country, all these are overwhelming and amazing experiences for me.