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“Offering imaginative interpretations, Lim’s work brings to the fore the everyday acts Asian American women used to claim cultural citizenship, and it paves way for more cultural histories of Asian Americans informed by gender and race, as well as by class and sexuality, as categories of analysis.”
-The Journal of American History
“A Feeling of Belonging yields fresh insights into Asian American women's participation in U.S. popular culture. Drawing on a rich array of sources, Shirley Lim illuminates young women's efforts to claim citizenship and gain access to social and economic opportunities, whether in the 1930s film industry or ethnic beauty pageants of the Cold War era. Her study highlights both the emergence of Asian American women as significant symbolic representatives of their communities and the complexities they faced in fulfilling this role.”
“A Feeling of Belonging breaks new ground in examining the cultural practices of Asian American women in U.S. popular culture. By uncovering their activities in sororities, the movies, beauty contests and magazines, it considers how these women negotiated places for themselves as ethnic Americans in an era dominated by race and Cold War politics. In the process, it expands the study of race, gender, culture, and citizenship.”
-Shirley Hune,editor of Asian/Pacific Islander American Women: A Historical Anthology
Shirley Jennifer Lim is Assistant Professor of History at the State University of New York at Stony Brook.