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From the Set Our Cultural Heritage
Introduces readers to the Chinese American culture, immigration aspects, customs, religion, foods, and holidays. Famous Chinese Americans, as well as noted contributions and inventions by Chinese Americans, are also presented.
- The Ways of China
- Life in a New Land
- At Home in America
- The Chinese-American Culture
- Time Line
- Glossary Terms
- For Further Information
A noteworthy review of Our Cultural Heritage from MultiCultural Review on September 1, 2003
This 12-volume series for students in the middle elementary grades (it is aimed at a fourth-grade reading level) describes the community and contributions of national groups of immigrants to the United States. Each volume contains four chapters: one on life in the country of origin, followed by chapters on the move to America, becoming established in a new country, and the cultural contributions the group has made. The large-type text is accompanied by numerous illustrations and drawings, most of which are fairly small and original to the period being discussed. Most chapters also include a one- or two-page sidebar on a particular American from that group or on a cultural topic. The volume on German Americans, for example, has sidebars on Revolutionary War heroine Molly Pitcher, the history of Ellis Island, and the singing von Trapp family (a slight stretch here, as they were Austrian). Many of the page spreads include a ‘Fascinating Facts’; in the Swedish-American volume, we learn that Charles Lindbergh’s grandfather, Mans Olsson Lindbergh, was a Swedish immigrant who served in the Union Army in the American Civil War. Without going into great depth, this series does connect life in these countries of origin with the immigrant experience as well as with the place each group has in American culture. Students will probably find it interesting to learn of the sometimes unexpected ethnic backgrounds of well-known people, such as in the chapter in the Arab-American volume that includes football player Doug Flutie, disc jockey Casey Kasem, and recent presidential candidate Ralph Nader. Each volume contain a time line, a glossary of the words bolded in the text, a short list of books and web sites for further reading, and an index.
A noteworthy review of Our Cultural Heritage from Children's Literature on November 1, 2002
Chinese society spans back across many millenniums. Perhaps no other culture has a deeper or richer heritage than that which Chinese people have proudly described as ‘The Middle Kingdom.’ This term was used with great pride by Chinese officials to describe their nation as a midway point above all other cultures but not quite at the level of heaven. Thus, what a shock it must have been for those Chinese who immigrated to the United States when they were treated like dogs by Americans who looked down upon them with scorn. Chinese laborers worked almost like slaves in a nation that valued them less than dirt. For example, Chinese railway workers laid track from California to Utah as part of the Transcontinental Railroad project. No one knows how many of those Chinese men died in an endeavor that was epic in nature. Yet, no monuments exist recording the efforts of the unknown casualties. In time, Chinese-Americans became full-fledged citizens and members of a diverse culture. As the author of this concise accounting of the Chinese immigrant experience notes, their efforts have resulted in wide spread acceptance of them as people of a long standing and proud heritage. Readers of this entertaining short work will come away with a better understanding of why Chinese citizens sought out a new life abroad, how they arrived there, problems that confronted them, and how they helped make America a stronger nation.
A noteworthy review of Our Cultural Heritage from Booklist on October 15, 2002
Part of the Spirit of America – Our Cultural Heritage series, these titles provide a simple, useful overview of each group’s immigrant history and lasting influence on American society. The series highlights diversity and also common themes, including leaving and finding home, working hard and coping with discrimination. There are now six books about European American immigrant groups, three about Asian American groups, one about Native Americans, and one about Mexican Americans. No other Latino groups are considered, and there are no books about African Americans, past or present. That seems a lot to leave out, but the publisher is planning more titles. One welcome addition to the immigration coverage is Arab Americans, which does a good job of discussing post-9/11 issues as well as the early immigration history and the contributions of contemporary academics, artists, and leaders. Each book includes lots of color and black-and-white photos, maps, charts, a time line, a glossary, and a brief bibliography.
A noteworthy review of Our Cultural Heritage from Midwest Book Review on October 1, 2002
Each book explains the history of the immigration and how experiences and motivations differed between groups. This series provides young readers with important information suitable for either supplemental classroom reading or reports.
Author: Lucia Raatma
Lucia Raatma received her bachelor's degree in English literature from the University of South Carolina and her master's degree in cinema studies from New York University. She has written a wide range of books for young people. When she is not researching or writing, she enjoys going to movies, practicing yoga, and spending time with her family. She lives in New York.