British Journal of Chinese Studies

dragon mural beijing 2018 copyright Gerda Wielander
Vol 12 No 1 (2022)
Essays

Chinese Identity Construction and Reconstruction as a Response to Pandemic Orientalism in Canada

Grace Cheng-Ying Lin
John Abbott College
image of people demonstrating
Published January 22, 2022
How to Cite
Lin, G. (2022). Chinese Identity Construction and Reconstruction as a Response to Pandemic Orientalism in Canada. British Journal of Chinese Studies, 12(1), 114-117. https://doi.org/10.51661/bjocs.v12i1.180

Abstract

During the COVID-19 pandemic, Chineseness has been embedded in a set of efficacious public health practices employed by China, Hong Kong and Taiwan to prevent virus spread. These measures were interpreted apprehensively by the West, including Canada, highlighting the knowledge hierarchies between the West (norm) and the East (other) as constructed by an Orientalist mindset. To Canadian Sinophone communities, these knowledge conflicts serve as a medium through which identity is constructed or deconstructed. Their trust in the public health measures has competed against other forces in political dynamics, which allowed them to generate a unique positionality to examine any given discourses, such as Chineseness and Canadianness.

Keywords
  • Orientalism,
  • Chinese immigrants,
  • Hong Kong,
  • Taiwan,
  • mask,
  • Canada
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