By Aihwa Ong
In her past publication, Flexible Citizenship, anthropologist Aihwa Ong wrote of elite Asians shuttling around the Pacific. This parallel learn tells the very varied tale of "the different Asians" whose path takes them from refugee camps to California's inner-city and high-tech enclaves. In Buddha Is Hiding we see those refugees turning into new citizen-subjects via a twin means of being-made and self-making, balancing spiritual salvation and entrepreneurial values as they undergo and undermine, soak up and deflect conflicting classes approximately welfare, paintings, drugs, gender, parenting, and mass tradition. attempting to carry directly to the values of relatives and residential tradition, Cambodian americans still frequently consider that "Buddha is hiding." Tracing the entangled paths of negative and wealthy Asians within the American kingdom, Ong increases new questions on the shape and that means of citizenship in an period of globalization.
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Extra info for Buddha Is Hiding: Refugees, Citizenship, the New America (California Series in Public Anthropology)
Hundreds of thousands of the “new humans” have been mobilized to transparent the jungle. “No Western-style medications have been to be had, and millions quickly died from malaria, overwork, and malnutrition. ” fifty four For survivors who later escaped to Western nations, slavery and hunger left an indelible imprint. Yann spoke of Democratic Kampuchea as “the land of not more wish. ” He used to be a willing observer, a instructor from Svay Rieng close to the Vietnamese border, who was once displaced by way of border ﬁghts and the U. S. bombing. Like many others, he ﬂed to Phnom Penh, the place he reduced himself through changing into a cyclo motive force. because the Khmer Rouge got here towards the capital, he ﬂed to Battambang within the northwest, close to the Thai border: I concealed myself one of the humans from the world. The Khmer Rouge compelled us to paintings. We needed to hold stuff, transparent the land for farms, plant fruit timber and develop potatoes. They stored taking us off one activity and giving us one other. They took us out of the orchards and positioned us to transplanting rice seedlings. They then took us out of rice transplanting and made us construct canals, all in keeping with their command. We simply allow them to use us, we simply stayed silent. We simply requested to be alive. . . . We by no means had adequate to consume. We needed to hold soil, yet they gave us simply gruel. yet what may we do? We simply needed to endure it. We have been dwelling less than their regulate. simply undergo it, or die by way of opposing them. even supposing early anti-Angkar propaganda claimed that the organization’s objective was once the “destruction of the family,” Michael Vickery argues that facts indicates that Democratic Kampuchea was once truly taken with expanding the inhabitants. The dispersal of family to diverse paintings groups used to be might be a part of a movement to shape peasant cooperatives, however the actual aim looked to be to wreck up kinship networks. actually, demographic coverage appeared to be “to inspire the formation and upkeep of devices of husband, spouse, and kids” for copy reasons. fifty five Village chiefs licensed marriages in the similar classification, and so they inspired sexual relatives and having infants. humans have been compelled into marriage for the aim of manufacturing extra infants. Vickery claims that “DK coverage used to be immeasurably stricter than the pre-revolutionary norms [on premarital intercourse and land of not more wish forty three marriage] it reflected, and it served to switch, no longer damage, the family members via moving parental authority over adults to the kingdom and breaking down the kin into nuclear devices. ” fifty six Mrs. Sophat, who was once separated from her husband within the march out of Phnom Penh, informed me that when she arrived at a hard work camp close to Battambang, “the Pol Potists” pressured her to remarry. a few city migrants speculated that the Khmer Rouge instituted pressured marriage simply because they have been attempting to get humans to place down roots and lift youngsters, which will stabilize the recent society extra speedy. The shortage of meals and frequent disease didn't appear to motivate doubts in regards to the knowledge of accelerating the inhabitants. there have been seven in Mrs. Sophat’s paintings gang who had no longer identified one another sooner than they have been pressured to marry (many later separated): They summoned us to get married.