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Description - Contagious Divides by Nayan Shah

"Contagious Divides" charts the dynamic transformation of representations of Chinese immigrants from medical menace in the 19th century to model citizen in the mid-20th century. Examining the cultural politics of public health and Chinese immigration in San Francisco, this book looks at the history of racial formation in the USA by focusing on the development of public health bureaucracies. Nayan Shah notes how the production of Chinese difference and white, heterosexual norms in public health policy affected social lives, politics and cultural expression. Public health authorities depicted Chinese immigrants as filthy and diseased, as the carriers of such incurable afflictions as smallpox, syphilis and bubonic plague. This resulted in the vociferous enforcement of sanitary regulations on the Chinese community. But the authorities did more than demonize the Chinese; they also marshalled civic resources that promoted sewer construction, vaccination programmes and public health management. Shah shows how Chinese Americans responded to health regulations and allegations with persuasive political speeches, lawsuits, boycotts, violent protests and poems. Chinese American activists drew

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780520226296
ISBN-10: 0520226291
Format: Paperback
(229mm x 152mm x 22mm)
Pages: 400
Imprint: University of California Press
Publisher: University of California Press
Publish Date: 5-Oct-2001
Country of Publication: United States

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Author Biography - Nayan Shah

Nayan Shah is Professor and Chair of the Department of American Studies and Ethnicity at the University of Southern California and the author of Contagious Divides (UC Press).

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