Immigration, Assimilation, Ethnicity and All That Jazz

Archive for October, 2008

I don’t understand radicals…

Posted by chinesecanuck on October 29, 2008

 …but of course, radicals don’t understand me!  Especially radicals who are involved with ethnic-related organizations (for their own culture).  Is it all that wrong that I participate in groups that historically wouldn’t have accepted me?  I mean, if this truly were the case, many of my parents friends shouldn’t even be playing golf!  We shouldn’t be working in certain industries or buying certain products!

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Posted in culture, ethnicity | Tagged: , , , , | 1 Comment »

Wal-Mart Canada launches “Asian line” at some stores

Posted by chinesecanuck on October 15, 2008

The clothing line is cut to fit petite women 5’3″ or shorter with “Asian type” figures. I guess this means “boy shaped.” I’m not sure if it was a good idea for Wal-Mart to use the term “Asian type figures” though, since there are women who aren’t Asian who are small-boned too (just as there are many Asian women who are curvy). But yes, it’s more likely for Asian women to have that shape. The price-point is really, really affordable. What the news release DOESN’T indicate is the inseam length. I guess if they’re REALLY going for the stereotypical Asian figure, the inseam length would be quite short, perhaps even shorter than the “typical” petite inseam of 29 to 31 inches. The most stereotypical Asian female figure has a longer torso in proportion to legs. Maybe the inseam would be more like 27″?

The line, which is made in Montreal (not China, thank goodness), will be sold at 16 Wal-Mart stores in BC, Alberta and Ontario.

Posted in Asian, ethnicity, fashion | Tagged: , , , , , , | 6 Comments »

Thanksgiving!

Posted by chinesecanuck on October 14, 2008

Yesterday was Thanksgiving in Canada.  It’s interesting how the holiday is so easily adaptable for different cultures!  My family usually does the turkey thing, complete with what my mom calls “Chinese stuffing,” which is sticky rice and Chinese mushrooms.  It’s really good!  For side dishes, we usually serve bok choy, choy sum or gai lan – all Chinese greens, salad and whatever other people bring.  For dessert, we usually serve carrot cake (store bought…when I was little, I would make dessert.  I haven’t made dessert myself since I was around 13 or so, since my baking skills haven’t really improved – LOL)

Do you celebrate Thanksgiving?  If so, how?  Do you adapt it to fit your own culture?

Posted in Chinese Canadian, culture, ethnicity | Tagged: , , , , | 6 Comments »

From the New York Times: French Muslim kids find haven in Catholic Schools

Posted by chinesecanuck on October 1, 2008

I find this article interesting and I agree with them, somewhat.  Being an alumna of a historically religious school AND a public school, I’ve found that the students were less likely to question or tease students who were “different” and that people were more open to understanding.   The article also says that students in the Catholic schools are better-behaved.  Perhaps it’s because religion is “there” even if students don’t necessarily take the courses (the kids do not have to go to services or take.  The spirituality is still there.

The French Catholic schools do not need to follow the same rules as public schools, which prohibit any religious symbols.  This means that girls are free to wear their headscarf.   Some schools have allowed students to use the chapel for prayers during Ramadan.  At the same time, parents don’t need to worry about an inferior education, as these schools teach the national curriculum.  In addition, Catholic schools have, historically, had a reputation around the world of having high academic standards and more open-minded about sciences (if Catholics in the US had a louder voice than evangelical Christians, no way would evolution be challenged.  In fact, it wouldn’t even be in the picture).  Immigrants generally LIKE high academic standards.  Personally, I think these Catholic schools provide some sort of middle ground for integration.  Depending on how “old country” a culture is, it could take several generations before people are integrated, or at least understand the local customs (even if they don’t believe in it).

It’s also interesting to note that the principal of a newly-founded Muslim school sends his kids to a Catholic school rather than his own!

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