Fusion

In physics, fusion is the collision of nuclei generating the power of the stars. The term “fusion” is used generally to mean “combination.” In the surface realms of culture, “fusion” is pabulum jazz, celebrity chefs dabbling in “Pacific Rim” seasoning, or an Univision media venture. It is described in a brand launch as “fun, fresh, and even irreverent,” as though “irreverent” is the outer edge of what one might do with fusion. Applied to Asian Americans, however, “fusion” retrieves the usage from physics. It is about the creation of radical change through the politics of coalition, wherein each part brings the strength of its identity, simultaneously creating new energy in actions around specific goals that will forever alter relationships of power. Professional activists might recognize this as the definition of organizing (Bobo, Kendall, and Max 2010). For critical race theorists, fusion’s political potential is a reason to retain racialized identity, …

This essay may be found on page 101 of the printed volume.

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