Troubling Borders

An Anthology of Art and Literature by Southeast Asian Women in the Diaspora

EDITED BY ISABELLE THUY PELAUD, LAN DUONG, MARIAM B. LAM, AND KATHY L. NGUYEN

Bronze Book Award in the Association for Borderlands Studies Best Book Award

Pairing image and text, Troubling Borders showcases creative writing and visual artworks by sixty-one women of Vietnamese, Cambodian, Lao, Thai, and Filipino ancestry. The collection features compelling storytelling that troubles the borders of categorization and reflects the multilayered experience of Southeast Asian women.

The diverse voices featured here have been shaped by colonization, wars, globalization, and militarization. For some of these women on the margins of the margin, crafting and showing their work is a bold act in itself. Their provocative and accessible creations tell unique stories, provide a sharp contrast to familiar stereotypes - Southeast Asian women as exotic sex symbols, dragon ladies, prostitutes, and "bar girls"-and serve as entry points for broader discussions on questions of history, memory, and identity.

This book will have a major impact in multiple fields with an intersectional and nuanced evaluation that brings together race, gender, nation, labor, and migration. Timely, productive, provocative, and incontrovertibly interdisciplinary, it will expand the current purview of Southeast Asian/American literary studies.

-Cathy J. Schlund-Vials, author of War, Genocide, and Justice

 

ANIDA YOEU ALI Palimpsest for Generation 1.5 3-channel video installation of original performance and installation in December 2009

ANIDA YOEU ALI
Palimpsest for Generation 1.5
3-channel video installation of original performance and installation in December 2009

Troubling Borders gathers an amazing number of powerful selections of literary writing and visual art. I am struck by how moving, how political, how diverse these selections are. They bear witness to the hauntings of empire and fill gaps in our understanding of the life and imagination of Southeast Asian women. I am awed by this collection.

Nguyen-vo Thu-huong, author of The Ironies of Freedom