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Since the colonization of the Philippines in 1898 by the United States, close ties have existed between the two countries. After the passing of the 1965 Immigration Act, mass numbers of Filipinos immigrated to the U.S., particularly along the East Coast, creating one of the largest Asian groups in the country. However, speculation arises when it comes to categorizing Filipinos as Asian, Latino or even Pacific Islander. The basis of identity formation relies on the intersection of multiple components such as gender, religion, hometown, parents’ background, socioeconomic status, employment and career goals, etc. Through a feminist research lens, this presentation argues that the intersections of these complex layers influence identity formation among second-generation Filipina Americans (SGFAs). Sources include interviews of college-aged SGFAs from New York and in-depth research on how close these women feel to Filipino culture, being both U.S.-born yet raised by Filipino immigrant parents. The results yielded a unique relationship between the female children of Filipino immigrants and the Philippines, reflected by their common disfluency of Tagalog and unfamiliarity with their “home country.” The estrangement these women feel toward the Philippines is highlighted by how they were raised by their parents because of their gender, along with the “Americanization” they experienced growing up in New York. Study in migration and gender is relatively new and has evolved since its commencement in the 1970s and ’80s. In order to contribute to this scholarship, this presentation amplifies the voices of Filipina Americans to shed light on their unique perspective as it highlights important differences from those of their male counterparts.



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Second-Generation Filipina Americans: Language and Gender Roles as Influences on Identity Formation