How does the last chapter offer a non-political alternative to John Kwang’s vision of multiculturalism?

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Native Speaker was written by Chang-rae Lee and published in 1995. The major theme of the book is identity in America. One of the main characters, Henry Park, the child of Korean immigrants, believes that he can assimilate if he becomes a native speaker.

John Kwang's vision of multiculturalism is...

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Native Speaker was written by Chang-rae Lee and published in 1995. The major theme of the book is identity in America. One of the main characters, Henry Park, the child of Korean immigrants, believes that he can assimilate if he becomes a native speaker.

John Kwang's vision of multiculturalism is one that divorces Americanism from ethnicity, instead of fusing the two concepts together. Henry eventually realizes that his ethnicity and American identity can co-exist harmoniously, and we clearly see the manifestation of that realization in the last chapter. Instead of viewing his Korean background as opposed to traditional American culture, as John Kwang would see it, Henry has found a healthy balance between remaining true to his roots and being American in every sense of the word. He believes that America is the land of opportunity for immigrants and natives, and Henry becomes a native speaker. His Korean and American identities are about more than just where he is from—they are also about releasing his inhibitions in his soul and opening himself up to be free.

Near the end of the book, we see Henry and his wife living peacefully together, Korean and Caucasian, respectively, and falling in love again. Henry has it all, and he is at peace with his co-existing American and Korean identities. He and his wife live happily together. This non-political alternative to Kwang's multiculturalism is about acceptance, harmony, and peace, instead of cultural division and civil unrest.

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