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Immigrant Blues

Immigrant Blues

  

by Li-Young Lee

Analysis: Trivia

Brain Snacks: Tasty Tidbits of Knowledge

In case you're wondering what his connection to the "Immigrant Blues" is, it might help to know that Li-Young Lee is an immigrant himself, a couple times over. He was born in Jakarta in 1957, to Chinese parents. Just two years later, their family fled Indonesia in order to escape anti-Chinese prejudices there. Over the course of five years, they lived in Hong Kong, Macau, Japan, and finally in the United States. Talk about displacement. (Source.)

Lee's father was the personal physician for Mao Zedong. Now that's big time, folks, even if it was for only less than a year. (Source.)

Lee's father was thrown in jail and tortured after fleeing Mao Zedong. He had to spend nineteen months in a leper colony, and nearly died there. (Source.)

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