From henna tattoo kits available at your local mall to “faux Asian” fashions, housewares and fusion cuisine; from the new visibility of Asian film, music, video games and anime to the current popularity of martial arts motifs in hip hop, Asian influences have thoroughly saturated the U.S. cultural landscape and have now become an integral part of the vernacular of popular culture.
By tracing cross-cultural influences and global cultural trends, the essays in East Main Street bring Asian American studies, in all its interdisciplinary richness, to bear on a broad spectrum of cultural artifacts. Contributors consider topics ranging from early Asian American movie stars to the influences of South Asian iconography on rave culture, and from the marketing of Asian culture through food to the contemporary clamor for transnational Chinese women’s historical fiction. East Main Street hits the shelves in the midst of a boom in Asian American population and cultural production. This book is essential not only for understanding Asian American popular culture but also contemporary U.S. popular culture writ large.