Ft. viet and chinese

America is a melting pot of different cultures. Two of my closest friends, Cynthia and Donna, are Chinese and Vietnamese. I was curious as how being Asian-American can affect their daily lives and views. Often times, we can compromise who we “are” to fit into the American life. Lets take a look at the different ways my friends intercede their asian cultures with the American culture.

Donna:

dsc06729How does it feel to be Chinese and Vietnamese?

It’s actually pretty cool. I get to experience both cultures. I’m always eating Chinese and Vietnamese dishes at home and outside of the home. Good food is always a win. Since my family is Chinese and we just migrated to Vietnam, we mainly celebrate the Chinese holidays, traditions, and believe the Chinese superstitions. But what’s great about being Chinese/Vietnamese is that we know about the Vietnamese traditions and we can celebrate if we want to.

Do you feel like you identify with the asian culture?

I do. Sometimes I feel really Asian around some of my friends. I am very Americanized compared to most Asians but I can relate to the not Americanized asians as well. As far as, some of my mannerisms. Most of my best friends are Asian. We just have a common ground that we relate to. We never even mention that we’re Asian or how it effects our relationship. When I go looking for food Asian foods always catch my eye first and it’s just something I know I’m familiar and comfortable with.

Cynthia:

dsc06763Do you feel like you identify with the asian culture?

Yes thankfully my parents have submerged me with enough Vietnamese and Chinese culture for me to feel a part of it. Unfortunately the only thing that makes me feel somewhat separated from the Asian culture is the language. I was taught Teochew which is not a common Chinese dialect to many Chinese people which makes me have a barrier when going to restaurants for example. My Vietnamese is slowly deteriorating because my dad learned English eloquently so I am not able to practice as much as I wish I could. So speaking to other Chinese or Vietnamese people I feel somewhat ashamed and embarrassed so I pretend to not know any.

How does it make you feel to be considered Asian American ?

I am PROUD to be both Asian and American. Being American allows me to experience all the opportunities my parents were not able to have. The only downside of being an Asian American is to please both expectations from both sides of cultures. Expectations such as Asian culture: staying at home more and American culture: going out to socialize is important. Overall, it is somewhat internal conflicts being an Asian American but I am proud to be who I am today due to both cultures.

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