Asian American literary discourse identifies gender, identities of race and sexuality as the major areas of contention as people get into marriage. Cultural differences are an emerging terrain and serious explorations have been initiated. Interracial marriages intersected by social class structures as a central theme has developed rapidly. Today’s marriage is rapidly changing from the far renown traditional environment of earlier years to a current situation made up of individuals of different races, sexes, religious beliefs and ethnic backgrounds. You will find out that there are many women and women in married and are of different skin colors. Furthermore, due to the current global village, people’s minds have been opened up and issues of discrimination and racism is on the decline. Men of color who marry outside of their race don’t “want to escape” from their culture, values and/or themselves, instead they are driven by love.
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Mura through contradictions of rage and reconciliation criticizes the sense of hop in the world that is driven by cultural differences and racial diversity. He explores range of forces of the evocative gift of marriage balanced by a quick intelligence and the redemptive surprise of tenderness among men. He explores the connections between identity, history, and sexuality through the scale of desire. From his work we realize that cultural desire shapes an individual’s history. On the other hand, collective history often shapes one’s desire to a particular angle. The novel Reflections of My Daughter assembles different memories and history that associates American racism to the sexual culture (Behera, 2006). His perspective equates the white color with beauty and colored people with degradation. The inability of the two races to stay together in marriage unmasks the painful conflicts among race, fidelity and sexual orientation.
Just like any other marriage of same racial identity, proponents of different race marriages argue that there is no big deal if two people who love each other get married. These people should be accorder the same rights, responsibilities and privileges no matter where they originate from. It only takes the understanding of the two adults who are involved in the marriage. We should engage in the racial difference but should ask our selves, why is divorce rate of same races on the increase? Marriage is in crisis and therefore different measures should be tried to save the institution. In this case, cultural differences may be amalgamated to build a marriage with no breakups and divorce. Same culture male female relationships happen and they lead to marriage but before long, they experience issues that are as complex as partner’s involving themselves in infidelity in marriage which is an epidemic (Iwabuchi & Stuhr, 2003). This cannot be avoided as been pointed out but only through understanding and sticking to the vows. All straight marriage experience difficult huddles and they offer marriage protection because children are always involved. Any marriage should be seen as religious based and all the laws and cultural beliefs revolving around marriage are based on one ideology which is baring children.
Reflections of My Daughter creates a perspective where the author contemplates that his daughter is going to inherit his father’s range over assimilation and his internment as she pursues her own identity in the multi-racial society. Tracing his family path from that of a Japanese origin to America, Mura sees his daughter to have the unbroken joy of love, this makes her become his hymn despite the colors of desire offering a powerful meditation on the matrix of race and culture. Mura has been able to use his own Japanese American heritage and his sexual history to create a motif that unifies his literary perspective (O'Hearn, 1998). He is able to connect the two cultural aspects because as he elaborates in the book, he was also fascinated by ‘whiteness.’ The poet cum author is able to evoke images of the past where his grandparents who were first generation Japanese Americans were held in internment camps. This was the first era when man and woman from different cultural backgrounds discovered the strange linkage of sexuality and self.
People have been awakened and issues of discrimination and racism is on the decline this is because racism is seen as a set of actions that views a person as inferior to another person or group because of physical appearance, becomes a dangerous practice because it impedes people from achieving their full potential as human being. From this perspective he writes, “it’s clear it didn’t matter to the neighborhood children that her daughter was of mixed race and part white. They saw her dark skin and ran” (Behera, 2006). Such actions prevents one from making full contribution to the society and at the same time, people who engage in racist actions are prevented from benefiting from contributions of the recipient of their actions.
Reflections of My Daughter also reflects on the community just like other pieces because it speaks about the people who have some weaknesses in the societies but are understood and accepted. This literature just like the name suggests talks about the people of the society and how they accept all those who have various challenges in terms of cultural differences. It thus reflects on the community and shows how these people should be emulated so as to be empowered and enlightened in the best ways of the community. Literature therefore portrays all the day to today activities that happen and above all the activities that occurred in our communities at one given time in order to change, encourage, or correct them (Iwabuchi & Stuhr, 2003). The literature which Mura engaged in is seen as media or a tool that allows people to reflect what is in the mind, what is in the society, what will happen in future and tell on innovations among others. His work is able to reflect on the community as a whole and what builds the community. There are many literary works done by different writers that communicate specific messages which are either meant to talk of a vice in a society (James, 2003). This one specifically teaches the society of the norms they are expected to follow and direct those who have gone astray.
In the current twentieth century, biculturalism and biracialism is increasingly becoming a common phenomenon. People are no longer taking a keen interest in skin color and place of birth since they are no longer signifiers of a person’s origin and identity. When coming together in a marriage people are less frequently asked who they are or where they come from. Instead we are joined by shared sense of duality which also brings about the benefit of being part of two worlds. A marriage between individuals of different cultural background offers broader spectrum of meaning for race and culture. As such, there is a creation of new ethnic terrain that overcomes cultural division and racial transcends and thus Mura writes “I have a friend whose father is European American and whose mother is a Japanese national. She says when you grow up in two cultures, you aren’t split in half. Instead, there are two distinct beings inside of you” (O'Hearn, 1998)
The Reflections of My Daughter is more than the sum of what it advocates for. It is a hilarious, moving and somber novel where the author shows us his experience in identifying who he is. It is made for cultural lovers as well as those who would still want to maintain the status quo. It is a collection that provokes the mind into action as it tries to capture the cultural and racial fissions that in entirety represent the reality of our culture filled modern world. It elaborates on who we are as individuals as opposed to who we are as a community. The author having met people of various races, ethnicities, and cultures highlights his dilemma. He had to establish his identities in a world where biculturalism and biracialism had never existed.
He was ethnically and culturally isolated profound geographical location. He found himself living in an all-white community where ethnic diversity did not exist. Complications that arise in such a situation will thus affect ones family and personality as well. This motivated Mura in taking a look at marriage in a culturally diverse community. The writer expressed concern with his own daughter’s cultural identity because he was married to a Caucasian woman. He explores the complexities of cultural isolation but summarizes that it does not affect the marriage of couples form different cultural backgrounds. His reflection of his daughter’s life brings to light his struggles to form a cultural identity and thus in the last line of his poem The Colors of Desire he writes "…child, white, yellow, / who knows, who can tell her, / oh why must it matter? / The past, the present, and the future. A world beyond race, a world within race, where is it her life will go?" (O'Hearn, 1998). Finally, pro different culture marriages still argue that issues raised against this type of marriage is backed by nothing more than prejudice, fear and bigotry. Even though it is not widely practiced it is allowed in most churches and cultures. They perform commitment ceremonies and accept whatever decisions made by the individuals.
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