Getting Saved in America: Taiwanese Immigration and by Carolyn Chen

By Carolyn Chen

What does changing into American need to do with changing into spiritual? Many immigrants develop into extra spiritual after coming to the USA. Taiwanese are not any assorted. Like many Asian immigrants to the USA, Taiwanese usually convert to Christianity after immigrating. yet Americanization is greater than easily a technique of Christianization. such a lot Taiwanese American Buddhists additionally say they switched over in basic terms after arriving within the usa although Buddhism is part of Taiwan's dominant faith. by means of studying the stories of Christian and Buddhist Taiwanese americans, Getting kept in America tells "a tale of ways humans develop into spiritual via turning into American, and the way humans turn into American through changing into religious."

Carolyn Chen argues that many Taiwanese immigrants take care of the demanding situations of turning into American via changing into spiritual. in keeping with in-depth interviews with Taiwanese American Christians and Buddhists, and vast ethnographic fieldwork at a Taiwanese Buddhist temple and a Taiwanese Christian church in Southern California, Getting kept in America is the 1st booklet to match how religions impression the reports of 1 immigrant crew. through displaying how faith transforms many immigrants into american citizens, it sheds new gentle at the query of the way immigrants develop into American.

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Extra resources for Getting Saved in America: Taiwanese Immigration and Religious Experience

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MR. HOU: No. Our relatives are the church. WHEN MR. HOU told his mother in Taiwan that he was getting baptized as a Christian she cried for six months. Understandably his mother would be upset. By becoming Christian, her son was not only breaking with family tradition, he was also disrespecting his parents and family ancestors. 1 As the son, it is Mr. Hou’s filial duty to ensure that the spirits of the ancestors are well cared for through the offerings of food and incense, and the burning of paper money.

In the 1970s the majority of these cities were white, but by 2000 Chinese Americans comprised between one-quarter to onehalf of their residents (Horton 1992; Kwong and Misˇcˇevic´ 2005). Taiwanese immigrants are part of this Chinese concentration and are over 30 percent of the Chinese American population in this area (Li 1998). According to the 2000 Census, 67,485 Taiwanese immigrants live in Los Angeles County. This number, however, represents an undercount, for it is based on persons who were born in Taiwan and does not account for immigrants from Taiwan who were born in China.

Taiwanese affluence has also funded the enormous global growth in Buddhist temples, seminaries, universities, and mass media enterprises in the last thirty years. Some Buddhist organizations have amassed such wealth that critics suspiciously label them “religious business enterprises” (Hoh 2002). As Taiwanese emigrated, Taiwanese Buddhist organizations followed suit, establishing their organizations in heavily Taiwanese concentrated areas beginning as early as the late 1970s, but more steadily in the 1980s and 1990s.

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