73 pages 2 hours read

Gene Luen Yang

American Born Chinese

Fiction | Graphic Novel/Book | Middle Grade | Published in 2006

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Discussion/Analysis Prompt

Consider Yang’s perspective of stereotypes. What are some of the harmful stereotypes represented in the novel? How do the characters react to these stereotypes? Why does the author include these stereotypes, and to what extent are they effectively used? Provide your rationale based on text details.

Teaching Suggestion: Stereotypes are a pervasive motif throughout the novel; in fact, Yang weaves the harmfulness of stereotypes through each of the narratives. In the story of the Monkey King, the protagonist is discriminated against due to his species; in the story of Jin, he experiences discrimination at school from his peers because he is Asian. Finally, the character of “Chin-Kee” is a hyperbolic stereotype through the lens of racist viewpoints. By weaving the theme of Otherness and the Effects of Racism and Discrimination throughout each of these stories, Yang speaks to the effect that stereotypes have on the pervasive discrimination that is passed down through generations.