Jade Snow Wong
b. 1919

JADE SNOW WONG was born in 1919 in San Francisco, California, to Hong and Hing Kwai Wong.She grew up in a poor section of the city's renowned Chinatown, bound by the behavior required of women in Chinese culture. Throughout her childhood, she struggled to define herself as an individual against the authority of her parents, her church, and her community. Even though she graduated from high school as class valedictorian, her parents withheld financial support for college because she was female. Nonetheless, a determined Wong attended San Francisco Junior College, supporting herself by working as a cook and housekeeper. She graduated in 1940 with the highest honors.

At 20, Wong enrolled in Mills College on a scholarship and again graduated at the top of her class. From 1943 to 1945, she worked as a secretary with the War Production Board and while there won a National Congressional Award for an essay on the cause of absenteeism. In 1945, she published Fifth Chinese Daughter, an autobiographical coming-of-age story recounting her early struggles to reconcile the demands of both Chinese and American cultures. Fifth Chinese Daughter became a best-seller and is today considered seminal in the history of Asian-American literature.

An innovative potter and sculptor as well as a writer, Wong has received many awards for her work and opened a ceramic gallery in 1946 in San Francisco's Chinatown.Her pieces are included in collections of both the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Museum of Modern Art in New York.In 1950, she married Woodrow Ong, with whom she has raised four children and started a travel agency. Wong considers the products of her artistic life a vehicle for creating understanding between Chinese and Americans, yet she is deeply committed to her family and community. In an interview for Contemporary Authors she has asserted, "I give priority to women's responsibility for a good home life; hence, I put my husband and four children before my writing or ceramics."

No Chinese Stranger, Wong's second book, published in 1975, details the 30 years of her life after the publication of Fifth Chinese Daughter. Largely a collection of travel notes and a summary of events, this book does not offer the same insight into the struggles of second‐ generation Asian Americans as her first. However, as she describes the paradox of feeling acceptance among the people of China yet rejec

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Asian American Women Writers
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Asian‐ American Women Writers *
  • Contents *
  • The Analysis of Women Writers xi
  • Introduction xv
  • Diana Chang B. 1934 1
  • Edith Maude Eaton 1865-1914 Winnifred Eaton 1875-1954 14
  • Jessica Tarahata Hagedorn B. 1949 28
  • Maxine Hong Kingston B. 1940 37
  • Joy Kogawa B. 1935 53
  • Bharati Mukherjee B. 1938 68
  • Amy Tan B. 1952 81
  • Linda Ty-Casper B. 1931 98
  • Jade Snow Wong B. 1919 110
  • Hisaye Yamamoto B. 1921 121
  • Wakako Yamauchi B. 1924 133
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