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Real and Imagined Immigrant Identities in the Public Sphere: Representations of South Asian Women in Literary and Television Media Open Access

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The purpose of this project is to explore representations of South Asian immigrant women in the media, and the implications of those representations. Grounding this project's analysis in the theoretical frameworks of neoliberal theory and the feminist media critiques of representations of women of color appearing in visual media, allowed for an examination of South Asian immigrant women characters appearing on current fictional television shows and in popular fictional literature in the United States. The analysis revealed that while South Asian women did not adhere to the stereotypes that were historically attributed to women of color, they did function within the parameters of a new stereotype - the idealized immigrant citizen, or "the model minority". Representations of South Asian immigrant women in the media as model immigrant citizens not only create further racial stratification between minorities, but also erase the diversity of the larger South Asian community.

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