Chinatown Kid Sparknotes

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“The Adventures of Eddie Fung: Chinatown Kid, Texas Cowboy, Prisoner of War”(2007) is a memoir by Eddie Fung and Judy Yung that describes Fung’s life as a Chinese-American throughout World War II in which he is taken as a prisoner of war. Judy Yung, the author, was a professor and historian who wanted to tell Eddie Fung’s life story and show the experiences of Chinese-Americans during World War II through the social and political changes in the United States. Eddie Fung and many others sought to serve in the military as the United States became involved in the global conflict of World War II which invited racism due to the challenges of serving in the military being a Chinese-American. Fung grew up as a Chinese-American in San Francisco and …show more content…

Eddie Fung experiences discrimination while in the military and as a prisoner in the camps. Fung says, “As a Chinese American, I was used to being treated as a second-class citizen. But the army was supposed to be different, a place where everyone was equal, that was the promise, anyways”(Yung 21). Fung describes that during his childhood he was discriminated against and that he thought the military would be different from that. The reality is that he was treated differently and struggled to join because he was Chinese. When Fung is in the camps he describes, “I was used to hearing racial slurs from white people, but it was different coming from someone who looked like me. I realized then that we were our own worst enemies”(Yung 28). This shows the ways that racism was shown in his own community growing up in American society was something he was familiar with that kept him wanting to assimilate to American culture. Fung however shows that when someone who is also Asian says slurs that was surprising because before he felt that Asians in America were similar in their experience that it did not matter what race they were. The racism from the Japanese soldiers made Fung think that they were their own enemies because in his eyes if Asian people could be racist towards each other, then white people would never treat them equally. Fung also points out, “We were Chinese, so they treated us like animals. They beat us, starved us, and worked us to death. They didn’t care if we lived or died”(Yung 89). Fung shows the harsh treatment that the Chinese prisoners were put under because of their race and because the Japanese prisoners targeted them specifically because they were Chinese. They were treated so brutally that he says it did not matter if they lived or died because they were treated like slaves and animals. He exemplifies the oppression and racism by American

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