Photo: Lucia Kim by Sophia Kim
Lucia Kim, who speaks flawless English, identifies herself as a Canadian and is the author of three published Canadian novels, is still legally a Korean. The 18 year old high school student and author immigrated to Canada 7 years ago with her family and is just about to become a Canadian citizen. However, not much in her attitude or the way she interacts socially shows her Korean nationality.
¡°Most of the time, I feel Canadian,¡± explains Lucia who says she feels more at home in Canada. ¡°[Last summer] I went to Korea for two months and that was enough. I wanted to go back home.¡±
The way she relates to her friends is the same. While she has a few Korean friends, most of her friends are Caucasian.
¡°I had a culture shock when I hung out with Koreans (international students or recent immigrants) from school,¡± says Lucia. An example of this was seen at Halloween. While Lucia likes to dress up and have parties, she found that many Koreans were reluctant to join in.
Despite how Canadian Lucia may feel, she confesses that at times she feels a distance between her Caucasian friends and herself.
¡°We eat different foods,¡± explains Lucia who shows disappointment that her friends seem resistant to trying out the Korean food her mother makes when they visit.
Another issue that Lucia faces is the language barrier between her family and her Canadian world.
¡°When my friends come over, I want her to talk to them, but she can¡¯t. I have to translate,¡± says Lucia.
One way she copes with this is to demonstrate the Canadian way of living by example; in the process, Lucia becomes a good mediator between Canadian and Korean life styles. For example, while Lucia accepts that her conservative mother will never understand casual dating or interracial dating, Lucia is content to date boys of any ethnicity casually.
Despite Lucia¡¯s confidence as a 1.5 generation, a glimpse of her struggle can be seen in her writing. In her latest story, she tries to incorporate what it¡¯s like to be a ¡°hybrid¡±, as Lucia calls the experience of the 1.5 generations, by writing from the point of view of an Italian-Canadian teen.
Her own experience as a ¡°hybrid¡± and the longing to belong wholly to one culture is revealed as she contemplates her future. When asked about marriage, Lucia says that marrying a Korean would make it easier for her family, but she thinks a Caucasian would be better.
¡°I think it¡¯ll be easier to fit in. I¡¯m a minority here. By marrying someone who¡¯s a part of a majority, you¡¯re half way there [to fitting in],¡±says Lucia.
Story is continued
DIVERSE 5th Issue
We are pleased to announce that DIVERSE 5th issue, Spring 2011 has been released.
12 Diversity in Canadian Workplaces What are the obstacles to a better form of ¡°diversity¡± in the workplace?
- Open Door Group
- BC Workplace Diversity Inclusion Awards
6 BC¡¯s Diversity through 30 portraits
2 ThePower of Exchange A Historic Collaboration between Germany¡¯s
Premiere Art Collections and Canada¡¯s First Nations
28 Ezra Kwizera Born in Uganda to Rwandese refugee parents, Canadian Musician and genocide survivor speaks on the art of forgiveness and of adapting to Canadian culture
42 Dana Claxton
The Mustang Suite: Questioning mobility, freedom and autonomy
24 Gung Haggis Fat Choy in Vancouver, BC: The Diversity of Canada
38 Denise Brillon Breaking barriers in the fashion world
32 Pysanky¡¯s Resurgence
Joan Brander¡¯s contribution to the renaissance in traditional
Ukrainian egg art
10 Publisher¡¯s Note
27 Benefits of being a bilingual writer
31 Canadians come in all differences
NEWS & INFORMATIONS
35 News Briefs on Multiculturalism
36 Publisher¡¯s Picks
You Can Order Here.SPECIAL FEATURES