Click here to download

I am not a virus! From model minority to public enemy, the racialisation of the Chinese community in Italy through food
Journal Title: MONDI MIGRANTI 
Author/s: Sebastiano Benasso, Luisa Stagi 
Year:  2021 Issue: Language: Italian 
Pages:  15 Pg. 119-133 FullText PDF:  193 KB
DOI:  10.3280/MM2021-002007
(DOI is like a bar code for intellectual property: to have more infomation:  clicca qui   and here 


Covid-19 has shed light on the Sino-Italian communities, usually perceived as a "minority model", based on their being considered as integrated, hard-working and silent. The media narratives about the relation between the spreading of the virus and the consumption of food framed as "disgusting" have neutralised the color-blindness usually applied to Asian migrants in Italy. The latent racism has been reinforced by a process of distinction focused on the disgust for an "abject" food. The reframing of the Sino-Italians as folk devils through the spread of gastro-panic has yet triggered processes of subjectivation, pushing them to make their voices heard on a public level. By the standpoint of 12 "Asian" restaurant owners in the city of Genoa, we explore the frame in which such dynamics have unfolded.
Keywords: color-blind; Covid-19; minority model; gastro-panic; food distinction; Sino-Italian community.

  1. Archer L., Francis B., and Mau A. (2010). The Culture Project: Diasporic negotiations of ethnicity, identity and culture among teachers, pupils and parents in Chinese language schools. Oxford Review of Education, 36, 4: 407-426;, DOI: 10.1080/03054981003775293.
  2. Beck U. (1992). Risk Society: Towards a New Modernity. London: Sage.
  3. Bourdieu P. (1979). La distinction. Critique sociale du Jugement. Paris: Minuir.
  4. Brigadoi Cologna D. (2020a). I cinesi d’Italia alla prova del COVID-19. OrizzonteCina, 10, 4: 48-51.
  5. Brigadoi Cologna D. (2020b). Sinofobia, xenofobia, politica di potenza: l’inquietante retaggio dell’anno gēngzǐ. OrizzonteCina, 11, 1: 40-43; 8035/5410., DOI: 10.13135/2280-
  6. Brigadoi Cologna D. (2018). Cinesi d’Italia, minoranza modello? OrizzonteCina, 9, 3: 31-34.
  7. Cheng W. (2013). Strategic orientalism: Racial capitalism and the problem of ‘Asianness’. African Identities, 11, 2: 148-158;, DOI: 10.1080/14725843.2013.797284.
  8. Coe A. (2009). Chop Suey: A Cultural History of Chinese Food in the United States. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
  9. Costigan C.L., Hua J.M., and Su T.F. (2010). Living up to expectations: The strength and challenges experienced by Chinese Canadian students. Canadian Journal of School Psychology, 25, 3: 223-245;
  10. Douglas M. (1966). Purity and Danger. An Analysis of Concepts of Pollution and Taboo. London: Routledge., DOI: 10.1177/0829573510368941.
  11. Frisina A. (2020). Razzismi contemporanei. Le prospettive della sociologia. Roma: Carocci.
  12. Gao G., and Sai L. (2020). Opposing the toxic apartheid: The painted veil of the COVID-19 pandemic, race and racism. Gender Work & Organization, 08 Aug: 1-7;, DOI: 10.1111/gwao.12523.
  13. Zhan M. (2005). Civet Cats, Fried Grasshoppers, and David Beckham’s Pajamas: Unruly Bodies after SARS. American Anthropologist, 107, 1: 31-42;, DOI: 10.1525/aa.2005.107.1.031
  14. Goler Solecki S. (2014). A Tale of Two Cheeses: Parmesan, Cheddar, and the Politics of Generic Geographical Indications (GGIs). Ph.D. Thesis in BA of Arts, Colorado State University, Double MA of Arts in Euroculture, Palacký University Olomouc and Jagiellonian University Krakow). University of Warwick, Department of Politics and International Studies.
  15. Hall S. (2009). Old and New Identities, Old and New Ethnicities. In: Back L., and Solomos J., eds., Theories of Race and Racism. A Reader. London: Routledge.
  16. Harris M. (1998). Good to Eat: Riddles of Food and Culture. Long Grove: Waveland Press.
  17. InteRGRace, ed. (2018). Visualità & (anti)razzismo. Padova: Padova University Press.
  18. Keil L., and Ali H. (2006). Multiculturalism, Racism and Infectious Disease in the Global City: The Experience of the 2003 SARS Outbreak in Toronto. TOPIA: Canadian Journal of Cultural Studies, 16: 23-49;, DOI: 10.3138/topia.16.23.
  19. King M.T. (2020). Say no to bat fried rice: changing the narrative of coronavirus and Chinese food. Food and Foodways, 28, 3: 237-249;, DOI: 10.1080 /07409710.2020.1794182.
  20. Lee S.A. (2020). Coronavirus Anxiety Scale: A brief mental health screener for COVID-19 related anxiety. Death Studies, 44, 7: 393-401;, DOI: 10.1080/07481187.2020.1748481.
  21. Lévi-Strauss C. (1966). The Culinary Triangle. Partisan Review, 33, 4: 586-595.
  22. Liu H. (2017). Beneath the white gaze: Strategic self-orientalism among Chinese Australians. Human Relations, 70, 7: 781-804;, DOI: 10.1177/0018 726716676323.
  23. Lu S., and Fine G.A. (1995). The Presentation of Ethnic Authenticity: Chinese Food as a Social Accomplishment. The Sociological Quarterly, 36, 3: 535-553.
  24. Meer N. (2014). Key Concepts in Race and Ethnicity. London: SAGE.
  25. Miles S. (2009). Apropos of the Idea of “Race”… again. In: Back L. and Solomos J., eds., Theories of Race and Racism. A Reader. London: Routledge.
  26. Parkhurst Ferguson P. (2010). Culinary Nationalism. Gastronomica, 10, 1: 102-109;, DOI: 10.1525/gfc.2010.10.1.102.
  27. Pedone V. (2020). (Non) Fai rumore. Il silenzio intorno all’espressione culturale sinoitaliana durante la stagione Covid-19. Sinosfere: 85-99; -- http://sinosfere.com/2020/07/30/valentina-pedone-non-fai-rumore-il-silenzio-intorno-allespressione-culturale-sinoitaliana-durante-la-stagione-covid-19/.
  28. Pollan M. (2006). The Omnivore's Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals. London: The Penguin Press.
  29. Redi F. (1997). Bacchette e forchette: la diffusione della cucina cinese in Italia. Mondo Cinese, 95; -- https://www.tuttocina.it/Mondo_cinese/095/095_redi.htm.
  30. Shirazi Q. (2018). Ambivalent identity and liminal spaces: Reconfiguration of national and diasporic identity in Mohsin Hamid’s The Reluctant Fundamentalist. South Asian Diaspora, 10, 1: 15-29;, DOI: 10.1080/19438192.2017.1396013.
  31. Wu D.Y.H., and Cheung S.C.H., eds. (2002). The Globalization of Chinese Food. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press.
  32. Yeh D. (2014). Contesting the ‘model minority’: Racialization, youth culture and ‘British Chinese’/‘Oriental’ nights. Ethnic and Racial Studies, 37, 7: 1197-1210;, DOI: 10.1080/01419870.2014.859288.
  33. Young S.L. (2015). It’s not just black and white. Departures in Critical Qualitative Research, 4, 4: 8-32;, DOI: 10. 1525/dcqr.2015.4.4.8.
  34. Zanini L. (2018). Non solo involtini primavera. Dinamiche dell’imprenditoria cinese nel settore della ristorazione in veneto. In: Rasera M. and Sacchetto D., eds., Cinesi tra le maglie del lavoro. Milano: FrancoAngeli.

Sebastiano Benasso, Luisa Stagi, in "MONDI MIGRANTI" 2/2021, pp. 119-133, DOI:10.3280/MM2021-002007

   

FrancoAngeli is a member of Publishers International Linking Association a not for profit orgasnization wich runs the CrossRef service, enabing links to and from online scholarly content