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YELL-Oh Girls! Emerging Voices Explore Culture, Identity, and Growing Up Asian American Paperback – July 31, 2001


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Harper Perennial; First Edition edition (July 31, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0060959444
  • ISBN-13: 978-0060959449
  • Product Dimensions: 8 x 5.3 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #561,247 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Coming of age as an Asian-American girl in the largely white reaches of upstate New York, editor Nam writes that she began to "make sense of the contradictions of being Asian, American, and a girl" through writing, as did many of the young women whose stories, essays, poems and letters she's compiled in this vibrant, much-needed anthology. Though Nam received hundreds of contributions, the collection includes only 80 brief selections (most are under three pages) by budding writers between 15 and 22 years of age, from all over the country. Nam presents the pieces according to theme with helpful background information and analyses of the works, and ends each section with a "Mentor Piece" by an established Asian-American writer on her own coming-of-age (these include essays by Lois-Ann Yamanaka and Helen Zia). The real stars in this collection, however, are girls like high school senior Rona Luo, who waxes lyrical about the "last time I saw my father chow" (cook with a wok). Other essays discuss body image, interracial friendship and dating, adoption, "model minority" stereotypes, Asian-American feminist activism, sexuality, language and white boys' "Asian fetish." Nam regrets that her youth was filled with silence on the subject of being young and Asian-American. Thanks to this fine collection of writings, future generations of Asian-American girls need not feel so isolated. (Aug.)Forecast: Though the book will appeal to young Asian-American women, the writers' focus on the tough work of establishing identity will make it relevant to young women of all ethnic backgrounds. Essential for high school libraries.

Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

From School Library Journal

Gr 8 Up-Asian-American young women speak out in this anthology of stories and poetry about what it is like growing up in two cultures. The brief contributions are from high school and college students from all over the United States and Canada. They speak passionately of the lack of Asians and women in the history textbooks; of feeling foreign in America and in the country of their ancestors; of being laughed at and ridiculed simply for not looking "American"; of interracial dating; and of finding their own niche. Arranged by topics such as "Finding the Way Home," "Dolly Rage," and "Family Ties," each entry begins with some background about the writer and the work. The selections are interspersed with pieces by notable Asian-American women such as congresswoman Patsy Mink and writer Lois-Ann Yamanaka. The overall strength of the writing, and the need for this topic, makes this a worthy addition to YA collections.

DeAnn Tabuchi, San Anselmo Public Library, CA

Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.


More About the Author

Multi-published author Gloria Ng is an Oakland-based mother of three who writes on Owl Time. Her work has appeared in anthologies, including YELL-Oh Girls! (HarperCollins, 2001)

Seeing the lack of bilingual books to read to her children, she created the Mama Gloria Chinese-English Bilingual Books series.

For forthcoming book updates, click the "Like" button at the right of this bio as well as the link under "Stay Up To Date" for new release emails.

If you enjoy her books, please help others find them by recommending her books to friends or family or posting a review on the site from which you purchased it.

Gloria welcomes emails from readers, writers, and reviewers at GloriaNg.com.

Contact or Interact with Gloria Online:
Facebook: facebook.com/FengShuiGal
Facebook Author page: facebook.com/GloriaFanPage
Twitter: @fengshuigal
Blog/Website: GloriaNg.com
Newsletter: eepurl.com/fSDdD (Sign up for a free ebook of Cloth Diapering Made Easy)

Customer Reviews

This is a great book that everyone women of color should read.
Artist
Many of these girls feel like they are stuck in the middle of nowhere and this is a feeling that many can relate to.
Victoria
Eventually after i got through the first few pages, i found the book to be really interesting and informative.
amanda

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

15 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Lydia Kim on August 3, 2001
Format: Paperback
I ordered this book online a few weeks before it came out in bookstores on August 1. For the first few moments after I got it in the mail, I just held it. This is a book I would appreciate now as a 21-year-old college graduate, but one that would have been my companion as a miserable high schooler.
I don't know what the editor Vickie Nam went through exactly when she grew up in a white town, since I grew up outside of LA for most of my life where there were always tons of APA kids. But I related to so many of the stories because I remember how it felt being an Asian American girl who knew I didn't fit into "American" society because the majority saw me as different-an alien, kind of. Every kid can probably think of a time when he or she was called a 'chink' (a penetrating story in "Dolly Rage"), or when she tried to live up to her parents dreams (several stories in "Family Ties").
I loved reading this book because it's a first real resource for kids who are trying to understand their cultural identity. It's something I can share with my baby cousin when she reaches middle school, so she's not just stuck with the stuff that portrays white girls and mainstream society. This book-- well-written and totally relevant in today's world-- is definitely going to make girls look at themselves in new ways. Thanks to the courage of a whole army of Yell-oh girls!
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on August 20, 2001
Format: Paperback
I agree with the reader below, this is a sweet collection of stories. I enjoyed and appreciated that the stories don't go into too much depth. For an anthology written by young girls, I think the reader below is expecting too much. I'm glad that the stories are true to their experiences, and that they do not try too hard to "explain" at the expense of being didactic.
I would buy this for every young asian american girl I know.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Michael J. Mazza HALL OF FAME on November 2, 2004
Format: Paperback
"YELL-Oh Girls!: Emerging Voices Explore Culture, Identity, and Growing Up Asian American," an anthology edited by Vickie Nam, contains more than 80 pieces (both poetry and prose) written by young Asian American women. There are also a few "mentor pieces" by established Asian American women. The book is organized thematically into 5 main sections: "Orientation: Finding the Way Home," in which writers "explore the Asian American landscape"; "Family Ties," which focuses on relationships with family members; "Dolly Rage," which deals with the intersections of physical appearance, difference, and discrimination; "Finding My Voice," about "wrestling with language, trying to somehow find the words to portray ourselves"; and finally "Girlwind: Emerging Voices for Change," which celebrates the activism of "the women warriors of tomorrow."

Each author is identified by her name (except for a small number of anonymous or pseudonymous pieces), age, and town they have lived or currently live in. Cities from many parts of the United States (California, Hawai'i, Illinois, Virginia, Wisconsin, Texas, etc.) are represented, and there is at least one writer from Canada. The young writers, who range in age from 14 to 22, have cultural/ancestral roots in many different nations: Korea, China, Vietnam, the Philippines, India, Laos.

Over 300 pages long, this anthology is full of fascinating selections. Most of them are very short. Some seem like seeds of what could become longer pieces. Some pieces seem to whet the appetite more successfully than satisfy it, but the best pieces are really noteworthy.

Some of the selections I found most impactful are as follows. "Her Three-Inch Feet," by Jenny Yu: a moving portrait of a great-aunt who had evidently undergone footbinding.
Read more ›
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By "lemondee" on March 1, 2002
Format: Paperback
Well, I was not going to write a review, except seeing one of the recent posts really bothered me. I liked Yell-oh Girls because it was a carefully done book that gave all different types of girls a chance to get heard. The comment from the reader from NY makes judges the girls unfairly. He is punishing them when they should be recognized and made to feel proud for being smart, talented and following their goals.
Also, I have never seen these kinds of discussions happening out there in the real world, so they are not cliche to me. This book is close to the issues I deal with on a daily basis. I respect girls for speaking out which isn't easy. I hope this wont be the last book and that more will come out in the future!
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13 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Victoria on August 3, 2001
Format: Paperback
Ever since I started rediscovering my Asian American culture in 1997, I searched for everywhere for a book where I could relate my feelings. There are many good books out there written by Asian American authors, but none has compared to this anthology. This is the first book that I have read where I could relate to all the writers' thoughts. "Yell-Oh Girls" is made up of wonderful stories, poems, essays, and quotes by young Asian American girls and female Asian American role models. The book is divided up into 5 categories: Orientation:Finding the Way Home, Family Ties, Dolly Rage, Finding My Voice, and Girlwind:Emerging Voices For Change. The category I found that I could relate to most was "Orientation: Finding the Way Home". In this category, the stories are mainly about dealing with being Asian and American. Many of these girls feel like they are stuck in the middle of nowhere and this is a feeling that many can relate to. Throughout this book there are many topics that make you think. It is such a surprise to discover that racism and ignorance is still occuring in the United States today. From the subject of Mr. Wong to the stereotypical view of Asian females in today's media are also discussed in this book. This is one book that should not be ignored because the Asian American population is growing everyday and the issues in the book are very important. I would highly recommmend this book to everyone I know. Not only is is a great book for Asian American females, but I think people of different races would enjoy. I think many females of different colors can relate to some of what is said in this book. I think it's great that Asian American girls have finally had their chance to speak out for themselves.
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