Driven Out: The Forgotten War Against Chinese Americans by Jean Pfaelzer [in Bloomsbury Review]
In the latter 19th century, thousands of Chinese Americans were viciously purged from their homes throughout the West Coast. What makes Driven Out more than another tome of historical woe are the little-known tales of valiant and tenacious Chinese American resistance. Rather than succumb to these acts of violent injustice, Pfaelzer gives countless examples of how the Chinese fought back, including some 7,000 lawsuits that were filed by Chinese immigrants in the decade that followed the Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882, the first U.S. law that discriminated on the basis of race.
Tidbit: Pfaelzer was an informative guest, together with Ruthanne Lum McCunn and Jack Tchen, for the Smithsonian APA Program’s literary event, “The Chinese American Experience – and Those Who Survived and Thrived to Tell the Tales,” on October 12, 2007.