Under the burgeoning social climate of anti-Asian violence catalyzed by the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, it is of paramount importance for Chinese language instructors to address the identity needs of Chinese as a heritage language (CHL) learners. Despite increasing scholarly interest in the study of the identity issues facing CHL learners, pedagogically-orientated discussions on how to incorporate college-level CHL learners’ identity development into the curriculum are almost nonexistent. This study argues that Chinese-American cross-cultural films provide valuable instructional materials that address CHL learners’ identity and cultural needs. This study analyzes four major types of challenges and struggles experienced by Chinese immigrants depicted in ten Chinese-American cross-cultural films (i.e., obligation to parents, a tendency toward “invisibility,” the paradox of Chinese-American assimilation, and intergenerational struggles) and demonstrates how such challenges and struggles can be utilized to facilitate CHL learners’ identity development through intergenerational communication, peer interaction, community involvement, and intercultural learning.
Identity Development and Culture Instruction in Chinese as a Heritage Language Education: Examining Immigrant Identity in Chinese-American Cross-Cultural Films
Luo, H. and G. Salvatore (2022) "Identity Development and Culture Instruction in Chinese as a Heritage Language Education: Examining Immigrant Identity in Chinese-American Cross-Cultural Films." Journal of the National Council of Less Commonly Taught Languages 32: 46-103.