Date of Award
Master of Science (MS)
With the outbreak of COVID-19 in Spring 2020, the yellow peril has come back from its clandestine hiding spot with attention directed towards East and Southeast Asian citizens. In the ongoing debate of cleanliness and sanitization during a pandemic, the yellow peril scare has once again American Chinese restaurants. American Chinese restaurants found themselves to be the target of online abuse and loss of patronage in these uncertain times. While over half of American Chinese restaurants took the loss and shut down in March/April 2020, they still reopened to partial to full capacity sometime in 2020. American Chinese restaurant owners knew that there were many vocal anti-Chinese sentiments, yet they still made the choice to reopen in spite of the abusive attitudes. I argue that American Chinese restaurant owners made the choice to reopen because of financial reasons and the communities that they serve. I also argue that non American Chinese people have used American Chinese food as an avenue for racist attitudes directed towards American Chinese people that has been exacerbated by the onset of COVID-19.
Ma, Rebecca, "Chop Suey Habits: the State of the American Chinese Restaurant during Covid Times" (2023). Theses and Dissertations. 1760.