National Abjection: The Asian American Body on Stage (Paperback)
Shimakawa looks at the origins of Asian American theater, particularly through the memories of some of its pioneers. Her examination of the emergence of Asian American theater companies illuminates their strategies for countering the stereotypes of Asian Americans and the lack of visibility of Asian American performers within the theater world. She shows how some plays-Wakako Yamauchi's 12-1-A, Frank Chin's Chickencoop Chinaman, and The Year of the Dragon-have both directly and indirectly addressed the displacement of Asian Americans. She analyzes works attempting to negate the process of abjection-such as the 1988 Broadway production of M. Butterfly as well as Miss Saigon, a mainstream production that enacted the process of cultural displacement both onstage and off. Finally, Shimakawa considers Asian Americanness in the context of globalization by meditating on the work of Ping Chong, particularly his East-West Quartet.