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Quinonez and Yang Response

In “White Baby”, Quinonez talks about his years growing up in Spanish Harlem and going to places called botanicas to buy Spanish comic books and to look at the Santeria paraphernalia they have, like candles and statues of saints. Issues of race come into play in the piece because Quinonez is talking about a religion, called Santeria, that was a mixture of the religion brought over by the black slaves and Catholicism. Black slaves worshiped their gods by disguising them as Catholic saints and implies that whites were in the supremacy during that time. His piece “The White Baby” talks about his personal experience with Santeria and the close knit community that Spanish Harlem was. Quinonez talks about babalawos and the talk he has with one of them regarding a man wishing to have a “white baby”. He hears different versions of the story from different members of Spanish Harlem; gossip appears to be very popular around there. In “The White Baby”, his writing style is a mix of formal and informal but seems to be more informal and personal.

On the other hand, “Paper Tigers” by Wesley Yang is written more like an informative article, although there is the use of the pronoun “I”. I think the author is trying to paint a general picture of the Asian American experience and draws from a wide variety of examples. For example, he talks about in some places how Asian Americans lack strong leadership skills because they are brought up to not speak out as much and to do what is best for the whole group. He also mentions the difficulty some Asian Americans have with dating and talks about a company that specifically helps Asian men with approaching women. Overall, I think that the author sort of downplays Asian Americans and makes it seem that whites have the advantage over them since they are not pushed to excel as much as Asians are by their parents.

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~ by papoufruit on March 5, 2014.

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