Most couples had spent much of their lives eating Asian-ethnic foods, so they had no reason to discontinue eating them.Yet they routinely cooked mainstream American food, such as spaghetti and hamburgers.“It shows that people show some level of disgust based on the [national] polls saying that everything is fine,” said Allison Skinner, lead author and postdoctoral researcher at the University of Washington, who published the study in the Journal of Experimental Social Psychology.Skinner said the students at the Midwestern university may not be representative of the entire nation, but she added that their feelings are “probably not exclusively a Nebraska thing.” About 1 in 8 people who married in 2013 tied the knot with someone of a different race, according to a Pew analysis of American Community Survey data.The journal Sociological Perspectives recently published Chong's findings in "'Asianness' under Construction: The Contours and Negotiation of Panethnic Identity/Culture among Interethnically Married Asian Americans." She said in recent decades sociologists have examined racialized assimilation, meaning that immigrants of color may be assimilating into American society in many ways, including the adoption of mainstream culture and becoming incorporated into American social structures while maintaining racial — and some degree of cultural — distinction.
"In many ways, Asian-Americans hold onto 'Asianness' because they have to, due to the fact that the U. society continues to categorize Asians as racially and culturally 'foreign' and 'distinct,' quite possibly not fully American," Chong said.
The respondents were about evenly split between the sexes; 87 percent were white, 5 percent were Latino, 3 percent were Asian, 3 percent black and 2 percent were of some other race.
As part of a longer survey, participants were also asked to rate on a scale of 1 to 100 how disgusted they felt about a black man in a romantic relationship with a white woman, or a white man in a relationship with a black woman.
Moreover, because the term "Asian" or "Asian-American" also is a socially constructed term imposed by the wider society on cultural and ethnically diverse groups of people from the Asia-Pacific region, it is important to investigate what “Asian-American” actually means for those who identify as that and in what ways this term is evolving and being negotiated by them.
Chong said that the experiences of interethnic couples reflect a highly complex process of assimilation that challenges assumptions and even stereotypes on many levels, including what “Asianness” means for the general public and for the participants themselves.