Chinese in P.E.I.: Chinese Islanders Making a Home in the New World

Here's an interesting announcement for a new book about the history of Chinese on Prince Edward Island – Todd

September 7, 2006

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Chinese
Islanders

Making
a Home in the New World

by Hung-Min Chiang

Charlottetown.  Chinese Islanders: Making a Home in the New World tells the story of some of Prince Edward Island's first Chinese settlers who came to the Island as early as 1850.  They were
subjected to the  infamous
“head tax,” as well as the more severe Chinese Immigration Act
(also known as the Chinese Expulsion Act). But through it all, they and their
descendants have largely

adapted to and succeeded in mainstream Island
society, and are proud today to be recognized as true Islanders.

Catherine G. Hennessey writes:

“From tenuous beginnings in the closing days of the 19th century
to the blossoming of a

vibrant new Chinese community in the 21st century, Chinese Islanders: Making a Home in the New World  tells the story of one of
Prince Edward Island ’s
smallest immigrant communities.”

From the book’s foreword by John Cousins:

“Hung-Min Chiang set out to write this history of the Chinese
Canadian community in Prince Edward
Island because, as he was told, “no one else
would do it.” What a daunting task it must have been. No group of
Islanders would be harder to document than these few Chinese settlers, who, for
obvious reasons, preferred to remain anonymous, and to live below the social
horizon, leading “quiet inconspicuous lives.” There were few
records, fewer accurate ones, no personal biographies for guidance, negligible
letters, and  no survivors from the
early days. Added to that was a “discontinuing of  generations,” a period of decline
between the 1940s and 1960s when the community came close to disappearing.
Nevertheless, Chiang has accomplished a series of minor miracles. These were
the realities of the Chinese community and the author does not avoid
them.”

“Rather, he recounts them with a serenity that carries with it
the sublime  sadness of the human
plight. And this, in my opinion, is the work’s great  strength.”

About the Author:

Dr. Hung-Min Chiang, originally from Taiwan ,
came to Prince Edward Island
with his family in 1967. A student of Abraham Maslow, he taught psychology at
Prince of Wales College and the University
of Prince Edward Island
until his retirement in 1991. He is fondly remembered as a favourite professor
by many. A lover of nature, all his hobbies bring him closer to the earth.

-30-

For media interviews, please contact Dr.Hung-Min Chiang, at (902) 569-3959
or by email at
mchiang@eastlink.ca.

 

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