Remaking Boston's Chinatown: Race, Space, and Urban Development, 1943-1994

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Overview

Title
Remaking Boston's Chinatown: Race, Space, and Urban Development, 1943-1994
Contributors
Chen, Thomas C. (creator)
Lee, Robert (Director)
Malone, Patrick (Reader)
Zipp, Samuel (Reader)
Brown University. American Studies (sponsor)
Doi
10.7301/Z0DJ5D1M
Copyright Date
2014
Abstract
This dissertation examines the politics of race and urban space in Boston’s Chinatown from 1943 to 1994. A diverse downtown neighborhood that survived multiple cycles of disinvestment and reinvestment while remaining home to a racialized immigrant community, New England’s oldest and last remaining Chinatown represents the complexity of U.S. racial formation and urban development processes despite its small geographic size. Using city and state archives, previously unexamined community organization records, and original oral histories with key Chinatown figures, this dissertation explores the spatial production of Chinatown, the conflicting visions for its development, and the ways in which Chinese Bostonians participated in the physical and cultural transformation of the city. This study draws on Asian American studies, urban history, and critical human geography to illuminate the spatial dimensions of racial formation and the significance of a racialized immigrant community to the making of a major American city. Complicating what are often considered fixed race and place identities in the urban environment, “Remaking Boston’s Chinatown” illustrates how the changing urban landscape constituted a crucial terrain for Chinese American identity and community formation in the second half of the twentieth century.
Keywords
Boston
space
city
urban
development
redevelopment
place
racial formation
urban history
immigration
identity
community
displacement
highway
Chinatowns
Race
Cities and towns
Economic development
City planning
Chinese Americans
Asian Americans
Oral history
History
Immigrants
Emigration and immigration
Ethnicity
Landscapes
Gentrification
Urban renewal
Roads
Notes
Thesis (Ph.D. -- Brown University (2014)
Extent
x, 302 p.

Citation

Chen, Thomas C., "Remaking Boston's Chinatown: Race, Space, and Urban Development, 1943-1994" (2014). American Studies Theses and Dissertations. Brown Digital Repository. Brown University Library. https://doi.org/10.7301/Z0DJ5D1M

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