Postcolonial History and National Identity in Shirley Geok-lin Limâ€™s <i>Among the White Moon Faces</i>, <i>Joss and Gold</i> and Li-Young Leeâ€™s<i> The Winged Seed</i>
Malaysia-born Shirley Lim and Indonesia-born Li-Young Lee are first-generation Chinese American authors associated with the Southeast Asian diaspora. In their literary work Among the White Moon Faces, Joss and Gold, and The Winged Seed, Lim and Lee draw the reader into the world of early twentieth-century Southeast Asia, a world shaped by Malaysiaâ€™s and Indonesiaâ€™s emergence into the postcolonial condition. For both Lim and Lee, independence is the start of an often complex process of nation building and the creation of a national identity that cannot be extricated from the politics of race relations. In this essay, I analyse Limâ€™s and Leeâ€™s representation of race politics in post-independence Malaysia and Indonesia, highlighting the importance of postcolonial history in the writing of Chinese diasporic identities.
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