Aesthetics for Birds

Aesthetics and Philosophy of Art for Everyone

Carrie Ichikawa Jenkins on “Asian Canadian Literature”


This is entry #2 in our ongoing 100 Philosophers, 100 Artworks, 100 Words Series.

Philosopher: Carrie Ichikawa Jenkins (University of British Columbia)

Artwork: Ray Hsu, Asian Canadian Literature (2011), Performance/Video*

100 Words: A performance poem about the category Asian Canadian literature, expressing frustration with assumed and/or imposed focus on (certain) foods and (certain) narratives of family life. Hsu eats pages from one of his own poetry books, throws soy sauce on his white t-shirt, and does a little dance: something for everyone.

The piece was performed at an issue launch for Ricepaper, an Asian Canadian literary magazine. Some time after this performance Hsu became its editor, but was removed from the position after two issues as the magazine reverted to a less eyebrow-raising approach to culture.

Favourite moment: audience reaction at 2:47-2:49.

*The original video provided by the author is no longer available on Youtube.

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