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HomingAn Affective Topography of Ethnic Korean Return Migration$
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Ji-Yeon O. Jo

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780824867751

Published to Hawaii Scholarship Online: May 2018

DOI: 10.21313/hawaii/9780824867751.001.0001

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Koreans in the United States

Koreans in the United States

(p.58) Chapter 3 Koreans in the United States

Ji-Yeon O. Jo

University of Hawai'i Press

Unlike Korean Chinese and CIS Koreans, who migrated to their diaspora countries before 1945, the majority of Korean Americans migrated to the United States between the 1970s and the 1990s. This chapter traces Korean American history from the early twentieth century, when the first organized migration to the United States took place, to the present, illuminating how Korean/Asian Americans have continuously been positioned as “foreigners” in the racial landscape of the United States. In navigating racial relationships in the United States, Korean Americans developed an equivocal stance toward the maintenance of the Korean language and ethnic Korean identity: on the one hand, they consider the Korean language to be integral to ethnic identity, and they also take pride in their Korean ethnicity; on the other hand, they actively differentiate themselves from native Koreans and have created their own intraethnic hierarchy for Koreans in Korea and Koreans in the United States.

Keywords:   Korean Americans, hierarchy, race, triumphant narratives

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