A thoroughly Asian-American tension runs through Phuc Tran’s memoir, Sigh, Gone: no matter how many works of the Western canon Tran reads, ollies he pops or punk rock concerts he attends, a white boy could always cut him down with a racist slur. Tran is in second grade when a schoolyard bully taunts him on the playground, making slanty-eyed gestures before yelling an epithet. Tran doesn’t know exactly what the word means, but he understands its intent: It is a naming. And it’s a moment when Tran becomes fixed within the white gaze as someone not from here, but ...
From Saigon to the suburbs
Sigh, Gone is Tran's first book, a recollection of his childhood growing up in Carlisle, Pennsylvania, after his family's escape from Saigon right before the fall in 1975, when he was a baby.
E Alex Jung | NYT Last Updated at April 24, 2020 21:55 IST