Saltwater City: An Illustrated History of the Chinese in Vancouver

Paul Yee, Author University of Washington Press $35 (174p) ISBN 978-0-295-96701-1
Written by a third-generation Chinese-Canadian historian and college professor, this book tells the story of a city that, despite a Chinese community currently numbering some 150,000, has not always welcomed Orientals. Yee assesses early immigration patterns (caused by economic problems and political unrest in late 19th-century China), the onset of racial hostility toward the Chinese by Vancouver natives in 1886, the process of assimilation during the second decade of the 20th century, the resurgence of anti-Chinese feeling beginning in the 1920s, and a new wave of Chinese immigration into Vancouver in the '60s. Ultimately accepted, and even protected by zoning laws, Vancouver's Chinatown is reportedly booming, ``armed with a fierce business savvy forged in the highly competitive Asian marketplaces''; the price of land is ``skyrocketing.'' Unfortunate design mars the book: though heavily illustrated, the photographs are all black-and-white, and many have a grainy or washed-out quality. (Sept.)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1988
Release date: 01/01/1988
Hardcover - 250 pages - 978-1-55365-174-1
Ebook - 257 pages - 978-1-926706-25-2
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