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Asian American populations have been deeply impacted by restrictive immigration legislation and American foreign policy, putting its peoples in a unique position for defining Americanness. How do artists with an Asian ancestry challenge a country that ostensibly celebrates diversity yet looks with suspicion on the foreign? We’ll look at the creation of “Asian American literature” as a category to examine this question. Why was Asian American literature created? Who is Asian American literature for? To explore these questions, we will consider the short stories of Jhumpa Lahiri; the essays of Carlos Bulosan and Alex Tizon; the comedy of Eddie Huang and Margaret Cho; and novels (in whole and in part) by Annie Choi, Bich Minh Nguyen, and Celeste Ng.