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Welcome to the Cultural Revolution

Inoh Choe | Thursday, November 3, 2011

Cultural changes do not happen overnight. Like a slowly steamed dumpling pot, the gradual changes came from within. The raging Korean parties and exclusive Asian manifestations have remained the same. But we have changed.

I am no longer an outsider looking in. Minus the Koreans (and their cliques), we all meshed into one giant Asian stir-fry pot. Our almost universal disdain for football procured puzzled stares from our Caucasian brethren, but it was okay. We danced to a different music (K-Pop). We took our shoes off inside our dorms. We hung out with other Asians, but enjoyed the same pizza as everyone else (although we avoided the “ethnic Asian food” section for years).

Four years later, things have changed. This year, we hosted the first black and yellow dance. Our white friend hosts the majority of the parties and probably writes better Korean than me. Diversity is at its best when you see people engaging other people of different color.

I see more confidence over the last two years. I don’t even define myself as an Asian American, except when I take pictures of desserts with my camera. Asian Allure has been the one constant in my life. The amount of time we spend preparing for well-choreographed dances, creating skits and rehearsing (actually, why do we even need rehearsals?) for fashion shows would horrify my mom. But through the solidarity of spray-painting a dragon tattoo onto a performer’s chest, or watching my sister and brother practicing for their first Asian Allure at Notre Dame, I feel pride swell up in me.

This Friday and Saturday, we all become stars for a brief moment in our Notre Dame career. I still don’t understand why I go back to it year after year, but perhaps being a part of one the most dynamic shows of year is sufficient incentive in itself. For $7, you get to see over 30 clubs spit out their best product. I’m still curious to see if the bottom half for the Lion Dance (my old role) can shake it to the “skanky legs” beat. Welcome to the Cultural Revolution.

Inoh Choe

off campus

St. Edward’s Hall

Nov. 2