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Chinatowns are spaces within a city that represent a culture distinct from the majority culture of the host society. They are a global phenomenon historically founded in major urban areas, conceived of as housing large communities of overseas Chinese immigrants. Although popularly known in many North American and European cities, they are as common in cities in every region, particularly in Southeast Asia, Australia, and South America.

Kay Anderson has described Chinatown as a concept that, like race, belongs to “White” European cultural traditions. As such, Chinatown is seen as a social construction that reflects the perceptions of White Europeans based on racial classification of the Chinese. This classification system serves to differentiate self and other, and creates insiders and outsiders. The resulting categories further create ...

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