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Literature & Language
Book Review
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The Mississippi Chinese: Between Black and White (Book Review Sample)


2) Book Review (30%) A total of 30% of each student's final grade will be based on the successful completion of a book review of The Mississippi Chinese: Between Black and White. This paper should be NO LESS than 6 pages, typed, double-spaced, Times New Roman 12 Point font, with one-inch margins. Remember to follow these instructions.
All research papers should be formatted according to APA style. This formatting not only includes basic paper setup and formatting, but also the proper citing of resources both in-text and your bibliography. However, being that this is a book review, additional sources are not required. Be mindful of the length requirement. A 12 point penalty will be imposed for each page a paper is lacking in meeting the length requirement. Title page, bibliography, etc., do not count towards the page length requirement. No abstract is required.
Being that this is a book review and no other sources are necessary, no bibliography or in-text citations will be required, but you may use other reference material if you wish. If you use a direct quote from the book, however, cite the page number. There is an excellent online style guide located at http://owl(dot)english(dot)purdue(dot)edu/owl/resource/560/1/. Basically, each student should read the book and write a summary of what you have read (about 1 page or so for each chapter).
This assignment is due November 18th by 11:59PM. Papers should be submitted electronically via the submission tool link in Blackboard. NO LATE PAPERS WILL BE ACCEPTED. If your paper is not turned in by the deadline, a grade of ZERO will be recorded for 30% of your final grade.
Papers will be graded for content, primarily with respect to original, analytical, and critical thought. Papers will also be graded for grammar, spelling, punctuation, etc. Please be advised that I will check for plagiarism. Any attempts to pass off information obtained from a website or other resource as your own work will be dealt with according to university policy.


The Mississippi Chinese: Between Black And White
The Mississippi Chinese: Between Black And White
Whenever the issue of race is brought up in America, people immediately think about the whites versus the blacks. However, according to James Loewen, there is another group in the picture which always seems to be skipped or ignored by history pundits. In his book, The Mississippi Chinese: Between Black and White, Loewen provides his readers with a great account of a people who found themselves sandwiched between the African-Americans and the White Americans. In a system designed for only two, the Chinese found themselves striving to find their place while also confused about who they are or should identify with. What few know or understand is that during the Reconstruction period, the white plantation owners began to look for ways to replace the black laborers who were now considered free by law. Importation of Chinese sharecroppers was seen as the best option at the time and once in America, the Chinese were seen fit to belong to be classed with the African-Americans. However, as Loewen details in his book, the Chinese were comfortable for only but a moment and began to demand for more recognition and more say than their class allowed. In The Mississippi Chinese: Between Black and White, Loewen digs deep into history and provides a remarkable piece detailing how the Chinese transitioned from being classed as blacks to the white status. The book is quite informative and even though the Chinese in the Mississippi Delta are not many, Robert Blauner (486) believes it goes a long into suggesting that “numerical and sociological significance are two different things.”
First of all, Loewen's focus on the Chinese is one of the things that sets the book apart. A brief and fast look at the history of America, especially on issues to do with race shows that a majority of authors ignore the obvious presence as well as the historical significance of the other minority groups. The truth is there is an evident lack of good research on Asian-American communities, but Loewen's account seems to restore the belief that the history of this group is only but scratched by historians. The Reconstruction period was one that involved pain and a myriad of questions. It was not clear how the country would move forward or how the different groups or communities would co-exist. The Asian-Americans, found themselves in the middle of this quagmire and it was not clear where they would fit in the society. Loewen uniquely and aptly depicts how this group existed first as blacks, then as another race acting as a social mediator between the blacks and whites, and finally, as whites.
As already stated, the Reconstruction period brought with it a lot of uncertainties and it was unclear how the newly freed blacks would fit in the society. To replace the lost labor, the plantation owners opted to import Chinese sharecroppers who they believed would agree to lesser pay and would not seek autonomy like the African-Americans. Unlike the blacks who had become enlightened and now understood their place in America, the Chinese were seen as people who could be exploited and mani

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