Representation Matters a Lot in Indie Film “For Izzy”

Will Yu, the creator of activist movements #StarringJohnCho and #SeeAsAmStar, daily tweets, “Representation matters today.”

If that’s true – and I’m of the opinion that it is – then the award-winning indie film For Izzy matters as much as anything I’ve seen in years. It’s a heartbreaking, yet hopeful story that presents several types of characters rarely seen in other productions.

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UPDATED: #RepresentationMatters for My Daughters – and Me

AUGUST 18, 2018 UPDATE: After watching both Crazy Rich Asians, which was a deeply emotional experience for me, as well as the delightful To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before on Netflix, the scene I’ve embedded below came to mind. It’s from Supergirl on the CW network, and it features two wonderful actors in a flashback: Izabela Vidovic as a young Kara Danvers/Supergirl and Ivan Mok as bullied schoolmate Kenny Li.

I’ve read some Asian-American women comment over the last few days that it would have been hugely helpful, when they were younger, to see themselves represented by the main characters in romantic comedies like Crazy Rich Asians and To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before. In a similar vein, it would have been significant in my own youth to have seen myself represented in a scene like this:

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An American Dad, an American Girl Special

Scooby, Scooby-Doo, Can’t See You

When I was in the third grade, my mom gave me some devastating news:

Son, you are going back to Chinese School!

I was shocked. Incredulous, I asked if she was kidding. But she was totally serious. Our church, an ethnic Chinese Christian church, was launching its own Chinese School, and I was going to be a student.

I broke down crying, on the spot.

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A Feminist Ally in the Making (Hopefully)

UPDATE: I’ve added Nicole Chung’s work to the list at the conclusion of this post! Nikki is one of my favorite writers, and she was one of the editors for the now-concluded The Toast. Her writing has appeared in the New York Times, The Atlantic, and a number of other publications!

Author’s note: Friends, I’ve been absolutely floored by your response to the launch of this blog and my first post, This Is What a Feminist Dad Looks Like. To say you have been generous in your encouragement and reposting would be a very serious understatement! From the depths of my heart I give massive thanks to every one of you who has offered a kind word or thoughtful comment, a retweet or share, a like or favorite, or a 👍 or ❤ or 😊. You all rock! Now, back to our regularly scheduled programming.

Welcome to Their World

I was surrounded by 800 women. Literally.

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