Skip to content. | Skip to navigation

Personal tools

Navigation

Monitored Peril

Asian Americans and the Politics of TV Representation

1994
Author:

Darrell Y. Hamamoto

Monitored Peril

The first major study of Asian American representation on U.S. television.

Illuminating the unstable relationship between commercial television programs, liberal democratic values, and white supremacist ideology, Monitored Peril clearly demonstrates the pervasiveness of racialized discourse in the U.S.

“This is simply the best book on the representations of Asian-Americans in media culture and should be the standard reference for years to come.” --Douglas Kellner, University of Texas at Austin

Darrell Hamamoto’s Monitored Peril provides an outstanding analysis of the representations of Asian-Americans on Television. Hamamoto’s study is comprehensive, incisive, and produces an illuminating contextualization of his topic. This is simply the best book on the representations of Asian-Americans in media culture and should be the standard reference on the topic for years to come.

Douglas Kellner, University of Texas at Austin

Early in the movement of Asian labor to the United States, immigrants from the Far East were viewed by the dominant Euro-American society as a peril to a white, Christian nation. How far have we come since then? This first comprehensive study of Asian American representation on network television supplies some unsettling answers.
A meticulous work of history, cultural criticism, and political analysis, Monitored Peril illuminates the unstable relationship between the discursive practices of commercial television programs, liberal democratic values, and white supremacist ideology. The book clearly demonstrates the pervasiveness of racialized discourse throughout U.S. society, especially as it is reproduced by network television.
In treating his topic, Darrell Hamamoto addresses a wide variety of issues facing diverse Asian American communities: interracial conflict, conservative politics, U.S.-Japan trade friction, and postcolonial Vietnam. Through an examination of selected programs from the 1950s to the present, he attempts to correct the consistently distorted optic of network television. Finally, he calls for an engaged independent Asian American media practice, and for the expansion of public sector television.

Selected as a CHOICE Outstanding Academic Book for 1995

ISBN 0-8166-2368-6 cloth
$49.95x
ISBN 0-8166-2369-4 paper
$18.95
320 pages 6 x 9
August

Contents
Preface
1. White Christian Nation
2. Asians in the American West
3. War against Japanese America
4. Asian Americans and U.S. Empire
5. Southeast Asian America
6. Contemporary Asian America
7. Counterprogramming
Epilogue

Related Backlist
The Bronze Screen: Chicana and Chicano Film Culture
Rosa Linda Fregoso
Explores Chicana and Chicano popular culture in Hollywood commercial and independent cinema. (1993)


Awards

A Choice Outstanding Academic Title

Monitored Peril

Darrell Y. Hamamoto is a lecturer in the program of comparative culture at the University of California, Irvine. He is the author of Nervous Laughter: Television Situation Comedy and Liberal Democratic Ideology (1991).

Monitored Peril

Darrell Hamamoto’s Monitored Peril provides an outstanding analysis of the representations of Asian-Americans on Television. Hamamoto’s study is comprehensive, incisive, and produces an illuminating contextualization of his topic. This is simply the best book on the representations of Asian-Americans in media culture and should be the standard reference on the topic for years to come.

Douglas Kellner, University of Texas at Austin

Darrell Y. Hamamoto makes a valuable contribution to our understanding of race, representation, and power with this comprehensive study of television programs about Asians and Asian Americans in the United States.

Journal of Asian American Studies

The book is packed with data, vignettes, and opinion on the history of US-Asia relations; textual analyses of individual television shows and series; and biographical sketches of Asian American performers. Hamamoto takes an appropriately critical stance, at times allows his anger to surface, and spares no institution or individual (Tom Dooley, Sun Myung Moon, and Walter Cronkite are all here) that has been unfair to Asians or Asian Americans. The book is well researched, interestingly written, and fully documented, although the editing leaves much to be desired. It is a ‘must’ read for academicians, broadcasting practitioners, and the general public.

Choice

Darrell Y. Hamamoto’s critical and scholarly examination of Asians in television media serves as a stimulating and timely discourse on the state of Asian America within the strict boundaries known as American network television. Hamamoto presents a sophisticated solution to the problem of cultural misappropriation and false representation of Americans of Asian descent.

Pacific Reader