Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Relative HistoriesMediating History in Asian American Family Memoirs$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Rocío G. Davis

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780824834586

Published to Hawaii Scholarship Online: November 2016

DOI: 10.21313/hawaii/9780824834586.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM HAWAII SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.hawaii.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Hawaii University Press, 2018. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in HSO for personal use (for details see www.universitypressscholarship.com/page/privacy-policy).date: 14 November 2018

The Asian American Family Portrait Documentary

The Asian American Family Portrait Documentary

Multiplying Discourses

(p.116) Chapter 6 The Asian American Family Portrait Documentary
Relative Histories

Rocío G. Davis

University of Hawai'i Press

This chapter examines the discursive possibilities of the filmed family memoir, called “family portrait documentary,” as a form of historical mediation. Three family portrait documentaries are discussed: Lise Yasui's The Family Gathering (1989), Ruth Ozeki Lounsbury's Halving the Bones (1995), and Ann Marie Fleming's The Magical Life of Long Tack Sam (2003). The first two films use innovative techniques to reenact the family story of Japanese American internment. In the third, the author also deploys numerous audiovisual techniques to perform the life of her great-grandfather, a vaudeville star, and their transnational family. This chapter considers the ways in which family memoirs manipulate the possibilities that film offers in representing generations of Asian American families, particularly by asking crucial questions about private and public negotiations with history and family stories. It also explores how such documentaries mediate the history of Asian Americans and reconstruct a familial and historical past that acknowledges the elusive nature of personal memory.

Keywords:   historical mediation, family portraits, Lise Yasui, Ruth Ozeki Lounsbury, Ann Marie Fleming, Japanese American internment, family memoirs, Asian American families, Asian Americans, personal memory

Hawaii Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs, and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.