Discrimination Against Asian Immigrants Essay

Discrimination Against Asian Immigrants Essay

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During the late 1800s, waves of Asian immigrants from other countries arrived at the United States of America. These countries include China, Japan, Korea, Philippines, and India. They believed that coming to the United States would enable them to achieve the “America Dream”, but various laws and discrimination prevented them from achieving the dream. In response to these laws and discrimination, Asian immigrant groups asserted a sense of agency to protect themselves from oncoming discrimination and prejudice. Agency is defined as Asian Immigrants/Americans resistance to the discrimination, unfair laws, prejudice, and low wages. Some agency was successful and others were not, but the main idea was that Asian immigrants were not powerless. They are able to resist through solidarity, strikes, and courts. Different types of agency were employed by different groups, but their goal was ultimately the same, to make it easier to live in the United States. Although Asian immigrants experienced racial discrimination and prejudice, their sense of agency allowed them to unite and survive in the heavily racist United States.
Shortly after the Mexican War in 1848, there was a labor shortage in the United States. American policymakers proposed to bring in Chinese laborers because of their experience and knowledge in agriculture, and also to work on the dangerous transcontinental railroad (Takaki, 22). The Chinese were not the only ones that were brought in to be laborers. The Japanese, Koreans, and Filipinos were also brought in (mainly situated in Hawaii).
In Hawaii, the Chinese, Japanese, Koreans, and Filipinos tendered the fields for low wages and were treated as “disposable commodities” (Takaki, 24). They faced horrible...


... middle of paper ...


... some cases, a voice. With higher wages, unity, ethnic solidarity, and an active voice, the Asian minorities were able to slightly minimize the discrimination and survive in the United States.



Works Cited

Takaki, Ronald T. Strangers from a Different Shore: A History of Asian Americans. Boston: Little, Brown, 1989. Print.
Duus, Masayo. The Japanese Conspiracy: The Oahu Sugar Strike of 1920. Berkeley, CA: University of California, 1999. Print.
"Waipahu Plantation Strike." Immigration to North America. N.p., 3 June 2011. Web. 14 Mar. 2014. .
"San Francisco Chinatown." Chinatown History. N.p., n.d. Web. 14 Mar. 2014. .
Price, Darby. “Takaki Ch. 1, 4, 5” Engineering Building Room 343, San Jose. 24 February. 2014. Lecture.

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