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Courses: Asian Studies | Cultural Studies | Sociology | Ethnicity and Diaspora | Nationalism and Identity | Migration and Transnationalism |
The hybrid person is often described as a figure who is at once a combination of cultures, a melange of influences – and somehow better for it. But Chan's research in recent years has shown that an entirely positive outlook for the hybrid actor, the person who slips, slides and glides between cultures and times, is not always accurate. More often, while hybridity offers promise – the best of both worlds, or even the best of all worlds – it is also a very heavy burden to bear. A hybrid person faces nation-states demanding allegiance; races protecting purity and punishing pollution; and societies and cultures insisting that one way is the best way, perhaps the only way. What, then, can we say of hybridity? How is it shaping the modern world? The brief answer is that transnationalism, living in nations, is now a fact of many lives.