Mobilizing the Vietnamese Body: Dance Theory, Critical Refugee Studies, and the Aftermaths of War in Andrew X. Pham’s Catfish and Mandala
Through analysis of Andrew X. Pham’s Catfish and Mandala: A Two-Wheeled Voyage through the Landscape and Memory of Vietnam, this collaboration between a literary scholar and dance scholar joins methodologies from their respective fields to explore the politicized dimensions of the Vietnamese body-in-motion. Published in 1999, Pham's memoir documents his journey, as a Vietnamese refugee living in the U.S., as he travels throughout Vietnam on a bicycle. We argue that through the literal and theoretical mobilization of his body, Catfish and Mandala constitutes a choreographic text that animates the Vietnamese body as making meaning within and beyond post-Vietnam war geopolitical formations. As such the text productively critiques the dyad of resistance and accommodation that have long structured and haunted critical inquiries into power.
Le, Quynh Nhu and Zhu, Ying
"Mobilizing the Vietnamese Body: Dance Theory, Critical Refugee Studies, and the Aftermaths of War in Andrew X. Pham’s Catfish and Mandala,"
Asian American Literature: Discourses & Pedagogies: Vol. 9, Article 5.
Available at: https://scholarworks.sjsu.edu/aaldp/vol9/iss1/5