By Annie Proulx
The 3rd novel from the Pulitzer Prize-winning writer of 'The delivery News', 'Accordion Crimes' spans generations, continents and a century and confirms the hallucinatory energy of Proulx's writing. 'Accordion Crimes' is a masterpiece of story-telling that spans a century and a continent. It opens in 1890 in Sicily, while an accordion-maker and his son, sporting little greater than his most interesting button accordion, start their voyage to the teeming, violent port of latest Orleans. inside a yr, the accordion-maker is murdered through an anti-Italian lynch mob, yet his software includes the radical into one other neighborhood of immigrants: German-Americans founding a brand new city in South Dakota. relocating from South Dakota to Texas, from Montana to Maine, the 9 immediately compelling and intricately attached sections of the radical remove darkness from the lives of the founders of a state, descendants of Mexicans, Poles, Germans, Irish, Scots and Franco-Canadians. during the tune of the accordion they convey their fantasies, sorrows and enthusiasm.
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Extra resources for Accordion Crimes
Through his characterizations of King and Donald, and his depictions of food as the vehicle of "yellow" history and pride, Chin challenges both late 19th century and mid-20th century portraits of timid 40 Consumption and Identity in Asian American Coming-of-Age Novels and effeminate Chinese cooks and affirms the virility of Asian American men through a reclamation of the kitchen as an arena of pride and power. As noted above, the stereotype of the Chinese domestic laborer is rooted in the history of Chinese men in the American West when employment opportunities were strictly limited due to racial prejudice, as Robert Lee observes: "Between 1860 and 1882, thousands of Chinese workers who had been dismissed as railroad builders and driven from the mines and farms took up independent employment in service industries as launderers, tailors, and restaurateurs, or worked for wages as domestics and cooks" (94).
As noted above, the stereotype of the Chinese domestic laborer is rooted in the history of Chinese men in the American West when employment opportunities were strictly limited due to racial prejudice, as Robert Lee observes: "Between 1860 and 1882, thousands of Chinese workers who had been dismissed as railroad builders and driven from the mines and farms took up independent employment in service industries as launderers, tailors, and restaurateurs, or worked for wages as domestics and cooks" (94).
As he explains to his family, "'Hey, everybody's gotta give up the old and become American. If all these Chinese were more American, I wouldn't have all my problems'" (Chin DD 42). Consuming an "American" diet, Donald enacts a "culinary passing" that signals his adoption of what he believes is a "pure" American culture. 18 As a racialized Asian American, Donald knows deep down that he cannot simply become "American" by consuming chops instead of chow mein. This is why he actively repudiates Chinese cuisine.
Accordion Crimes by Annie Proulx