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Shame and Recovery

Mapping Identity in an Asian Women's Shelter

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Karudapuram Supriya

The fields of communication and cultural studies have turned to investigating the relations among power, culture, and identity. Shame and Recovery is a critical ethnography, using postcolonial and poststructural perspectives in particular, of communication and cultural identity construction in a shelter for Asian women in Chicago. The cultural codes, values, and symbols of honor and shame illuminate the ways in which Asian women experiencing marital abuse and violence construct their identities. This ethnography also examines the process of recovery through the reconstruction of identity in the shelter. Shame and Recovery reflects on the politics and practices of religious faith as a paradoxical site of cultural control and transformation.