Immigration Studies on Korea Town Los Angeles

At other times, it serves as gestures of cultural diplomacy in promoting community interests, creating public goodwill, and generating consent in the larger geopolitics of Southeast Asia and the United States relations (Lin 166). The history of this town can be traced to 1781 when Los Angeles was founded as an agricultural settlement. Initially, the Chinese immigrants disembarked through San Francisco as workers with railroad companies and silver and gold mining. The Korean immigrants were facing increasing competition and hostilities with native laborers. These hostilities culminated in one of Los Angeles’ notable incidents- the Chinese Massacre, that happened on October 24, 1871 (Lin 171). Until the 1920s, it was an exclusion era for the Southeast immigrants who were lacking rights of property ownership and citizenship as well. All along, they were experiencing numerous economic and legal barriers to the formation of their larger immigrant community. The Korea Town as it is known today was reborn between 1933 and 1938 as an assortment of several settlements. (Lin 179). Henry Yu in his article argues that everyone in Los Angeles is tied in long links to people in other places, therefore drawing a map dense with scrawling lines of its inhabitants’ journeys. According to him, the Korean Town is a crossroads town because people living there do not know if this town they are calling home will be a place where they will stop. He goes ahead and argues that there are roads that lead to other towns and places and that people come and go (Yu 542). The Korean Town is a melting point of cultures where people make friends and meet neighbors, as well as try to make the town a better place to live. However, there is a lingering question of whether those who came to this town remember the journeys that they took, the people they knew before, and the places where they were. He argues that if historians followed the struggles of the Koreans, Latinos, and Chinese immigrants to Los Angeles and built their histories, the society as a whole would have seen a history of lives that were well-lived and stories that were worth telling about the town and its immigrants (Yu 542).

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