Ruthanne Lum McCunn (Chinese :林露德; pinyin :Lín Lùdé) (née Drysdale; born February 21, 1946 ) is an American novelist and editor of Chinese and Scottish descent.
Traditional Chinese characters are Chinese characters in any character set that does not contain newly created characters or character substitutions performed after 1946. They are most commonly the characters in the standardized character sets of Taiwan, of Hong Kong and Macau. The modern shapes of traditional Chinese characters first appeared with the emergence of the clerical script during the Han dynasty and have been more or less stable since the 5th century.
Hanyu Pinyin, often abbreviated to pinyin, is the official romanization system for Standard Chinese in mainland China and to some extent in Taiwan. It is often used to teach Standard Mandarin Chinese, which is normally written using Chinese characters. The system includes four diacritics denoting tones. Pinyin without tone marks is used to spell Chinese names and words in languages written with the Latin alphabet and also in certain computer input methods to enter Chinese characters.
Ruthanne Lum McCunn was born as Roxey Drysdale on February 21, 1946 in Chinatown, San Francisco and raised in Hong Kong.Her father was a Scottish American merchant seaman from Idaho, and her mother was from Hong Kong. Her parents met in the late 1930s when her mother came to San Francisco with a cousin to visit the World's Fair, where she met Ruthanne's father, fell in love with him and got married. Interracial marriage was illegal in California at the time so they drove to Washington, where a minister, who was a friend of her father's family, married them. For the duration of World War II, they lived in San Francisco's Chinatown.
The Chinatown centered on Grant Avenue and Stockton Street in San Francisco, California, is the oldest Chinatown in North America and the largest Chinese enclave outside Asia. It is also the oldest and largest of the four notable Chinatowns within the City. Since its establishment in 1848, it has been highly important and influential in the history and culture of ethnic Chinese immigrants in North America. Chinatown is an enclave that continues to retain its own customs, languages, places of worship, social clubs, and identity. There are two hospitals, several parks and squares, numerous churches, a post office, and other infrastructure. Recent immigrants, many of whom are elderly, opt to live in Chinatown because of the availability of affordable housing and their familiarity with the culture. San Francisco's Chinatown is also renowned as a major tourist attraction, drawing more visitors annually than the Golden Gate Bridge.
Hong Kong, officially the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of the People's Republic of China (HKSAR), is a special administrative region on the eastern side of the Pearl River estuary in southern China. With over 7.4 million people of various nationalities in a 1,104-square-kilometre (426 sq mi) territory, Hong Kong is one of the most densely populated places in the world.
Washington, officially the State of Washington, is a state in the Pacific Northwest region of the United States. Named for George Washington, the first U.S. president, the state was made out of the western part of the Washington Territory, which was ceded by the British Empire in 1846, in accordance with the Oregon Treaty in the settlement of the Oregon boundary dispute. The state, which is bordered on the west by the Pacific Ocean, Oregon to the south, Idaho to the east, and the Canadian province of British Columbia to the north, was admitted to the Union as the 42nd state in 1889. Olympia is the state capital; the state's largest city is Seattle. Washington is often referred to as Washington State to distinguish it from the nation's capital, Washington, D.C..
In 1947, her mother returned to Hong Kong with Ruthanne and her sister, where they lived in Sai Ying Pun. McCunn's first language was Cantonese, and she grew up surrounded by her mother's extended family. When she was six years old, her father returned from sea, and concerned that she could not speak English, placed her in a British school. Her father died in America while she was in Form Five at the King George V School.
Sai Ying Pun is an area in Western District, on Hong Kong Island, in Hong Kong. It is administratively part of the Central and Western District.
Cantonese is a variety of Chinese originating from the city of Guangzhou and its surrounding area in Southeastern China. It is the traditional prestige variety of the Yue Chinese dialect group, which has about 68 million native speakers. While the term Cantonese specifically refers to the prestige variety, it is often used to refer to the entire Yue subgroup of Chinese, including related but largely mutually unintelligible languages and dialects such as Taishanese.
King George V School is a co-educational international secondary independent school of the English Schools Foundation (ESF), located in Ho Man Tin, Hong Kong. The school has 1740 students and is one of the oldest schools in Hong Kong. Students take IGCSEs/GCSEs followed by the International Baccalaureate Diploma or the British BTEC programme. There is a Learning Support Centre (LSC) for students with learning difficulties. The campus has an area of 10.2 acres. The school is one of three ESF secondary schools in Kowloon and the New Territories, the others being Sha Tin College and Renaissance College.
At age sixteen, McCunn left for America in 1962, after passing her O Levels. She first arrived in Boise, Idaho, where her sister had already settled with their father's relatives. She then left for Walnut Creek, California, where she lived with a friend of her mother's. For two years, she attended Diablo Valley Junior College, and worked odd jobs from janitor to short-order cook. She then transferred to the University of California, Berkeley, and married Don McCunn at the end of her junior year. They moved to Austin, Texas, where she completed her undergraduate degree in English at the University of Texas at Austin in 1968.McCunn earned her teaching credentials from the University of California, San Francisco when they returned to San Francisco the following year.
Boise is the capital and most populous city of the U.S. state of Idaho, and is the county seat of Ada County. Located on the Boise River in southwestern Idaho, it is 41 miles (66 km) east of the Oregon border, and 110 miles (177 km) north of the Nevada border. The downtown area's elevation is 2,704 feet (824 m) above sea level. Its estimated population in 2018 was 228,790.
Walnut Creek is a city in Contra Costa County, California, United States, located in the East Bay region of the San Francisco Bay Area, about 16 miles (26 km) east of the city of Oakland. With a total estimated population of 69,122, Walnut Creek serves as a hub for its neighboring cities because of its location at the junction of the highways from Sacramento and San Jose (I-680) and San Francisco/Oakland (SR-24) and its accessibility by BART. Its active downtown neighborhood features hundred-year-old buildings and extensive high-end retail establishments, restaurants and entertainment venues.
Diablo Valley College (DVC) is a community college with campuses in Pleasant Hill and San Ramon in Contra Costa County, California.
McCunn first worked as a librarian and then as a teacher in a Santa Barbara elementary school before she and her husband settled permanently in San Francisco in 1974, where she was an English and bilingual teacher. She continued to teach until 1978, when she decided to write full-time.
She has taught a few terms of creative writing and Asian American literature at the University of San Francisco, Cornell University, and University of California, Santa Cruz.
The University of San Francisco (USF) is a Jesuit university in San Francisco, California. The school's main campus is located on a 55-acre (22 ha) setting between the Golden Gate Bridge and Golden Gate Park. The main campus is nicknamed "The Hilltop", and part of the main campus is located on Lone Mountain, one of San Francisco's major geographical features. Its close historical ties with the City and County of San Francisco are reflected in the University's traditional motto, Pro Urbe et Universitate.
Cornell University is a private and statutory Ivy League research university in Ithaca, New York. Founded in 1865 by Ezra Cornell and Andrew Dickson White, the university was intended to teach and make contributions in all fields of knowledge—from the classics to the sciences, and from the theoretical to the applied. These ideals, unconventional for the time, are captured in Cornell's founding principle, a popular 1868 Ezra Cornell quotation: "I would found an institution where any person can find instruction in any study."
The University of California, Santa Cruz is a public research university in Santa Cruz, California. It is one of 10 campuses in the University of California system. Located 75 miles (120 km) south of San Francisco at the edge of the coastal community of Santa Cruz, the campus lies on 2,001 acres (810 ha) of rolling, forested hills overlooking the Pacific Ocean and Monterey Bay.
Her work has appeared in Zyzzyva.In 1991, her second novel, Thousand Pieces of Gold, was adapted into a film of the same name. McCunn was reportedly unhappy with the adaptation.
Thousand Pieces of Gold is a 1991 film starring Rosalind Chao, Chris Cooper, Dennis Dun and Michael Paul Chan, and is directed by Nancy Kelly. The film is based on a novel of the same name.
She was co-editor with Judy Yung and Russell C. Leong on the Chinese American historian Him Mark Lai's autobiography. It was published by the UCLA Asian American Center Press in 2011.
McCunn lives in San Francisco, California with her husband, Don, and their two cats.
Lue Gim Gong was a Chinese-American horticulturalist. Known as "The Citrus Wizard", he is remembered for his contribution to the orange-growing industry in Florida.
Nancy "Ka Shen" Kwan is a Hong Kong-born American actress who played a pivotal role in the acceptance of actors of Asian ancestry in major Hollywood film roles.
Polly Bemis was a Chinese American pioneer who lived in Idaho in the late 19th and early 20th century. Her story became a biographical novel, and was the subject of the 1991 film A Thousand Pieces of Gold.
The Kiriyama Prize was an international literary award awarded to books about the Pacific Rim and South Asia. Its goal is to encourage greater understanding among the peoples and nations of the region. Established in 1996, the prize was last awarded in 2008.
The history of Chinese Americans or the history of ethnic Chinese in the United States includes three major waves of Chinese immigration to the United States, beginning in the 19th century. Chinese immigrants in the 19th century worked as laborers, particularly on transcontinental railroads such as the Central Pacific Railroad. They also worked as laborers in mining, and suffered racial discrimination at every level of society. Industrial employers were eager for this new and cheap labor, whites were stirred to anger by the "yellow peril.” Despite provisions for equal treatment of Chinese immigrants in the 1868 Burlingame Treaty, political and labor organizations rallied against immigrants of what they regarded as a degraded race and "cheap Chinese labor.”
Judy Yung is professor emerita in American Studies at the University of California, Santa Cruz. She specializes in oral history, women's history, and Asian American history.
Ah Toy (亞彩 Taishanese: /a˧ tʰɔi˥/, Standard Cantonese: Aa3 Coi2, c. 1828–1928) was a Cantonese-born American prostitute and madam in San Francisco, California, during the California Gold Rush, and purportedly the first Chinese prostitute in San Francisco. Arriving from Hong Kong in 1849, she quickly became the most well known Asian woman in the Old West. She reportedly was a tall, attractive woman with bound feet.
Him Mark Lai was a historian of Chinese America, a leader of the Chinese-American community, and writer. He helped restore the state of Chinese American historiography. Lai "rescued, collected, catalogued, preserved and shared" historical sources in Chinese and English. He was known as the "Dean of Chinese American history" by his academic peers, despite the fact that he was professionally trained as a mechanical engineer with no advanced training in the academic field of history. The Chronicle of Higher Education named Lai "the scholar who legitimized the study of Chinese America".
Yee Keung Victor Wong was an American actor, artist, and journalist. A fourth-generation Chinese-American, he appeared in numerous supporting roles throughout the 1980s and 1990s. He is widely known for his role as Chinese sorcerer Egg Shen in John Carpenter's 1986 cult film Big Trouble in Little China, and royal adviser Chen Bao Shen in the Best Picture-winning historical epic The Last Emperor.
Carolyn Leilani Yu Zhen Lau is an American poet.
Sze Yup Cantonese are a Han Chinese group coming from a region in Guangdong Province in China called Sze Yup (四邑), which consisted of the four county-level cities of Taishan, Kaiping, Xinhui, and Enping. Now Heshan has been added to this historic region, and the prefecture-level city of Jiangmen administers all five of these county-level cities, which is sometimes informally called Ng Yap. Their ancestors are said to have arrived from what is today central China about less than a thousand years ago and migrated into Guangdong around the Tang Dynasty rule period, and thus Taishanese as a dialect of Yue Chinese has linguistically preserved many characteristics of Middle Chinese.
Bertha Boynton Lum was an American artist known for helping popularize the Japanese and Chinese woodblock print outside of Asia.
Polly Bemis House was the home of pioneers to Idaho County, Idaho, USA, Charles Bemis and his wife Polly Bemis, who lived alongside the Salmon River in the late 19th and early 20th century. Polly was a Chinese American former teenage slave whose story became a biographical novel and was fictionalized in the 1991 film A Thousand Pieces of Gold.
Hong Kong Americans or American Hongkongers, are Americans of Hong Kong ancestry. Hong Kong has been a special administrative region of China and before that it was a British colony from 1841 until its return to Chinese control since 1997.
The 5th Regiment Massachusetts Colored Volunteer Cavalry was a cavalry regiment from Massachusetts, that served in the Union Army during the American Civil War.
As of 2012, 21.4% of the population in San Francisco was of Chinese descent, and at least 150,000 Chinese American residents. The Chinese are the largest Asian American subgroup in San Francisco. San Francisco has the highest percentage of residents of Chinese descent of any major U.S. city, and the second largest Chinese American population, after New York City. The San Francisco Bay Area is 7.9% Chinese American, with many residents in Oakland and Santa Clara County. San Francisco's Chinese community has ancestry mainly from Guangdong province, China and Hong Kong, although there is a sizable population of ethnic Chinese with ancestry from other parts of mainland China and Taiwan as well.
Prince Romerson was a Union Army soldier of Native Hawaiian descent. One of the "Hawaiʻi Sons of the Civil War", he was among a group of more than one hundred documented Native Hawaiian and Hawaii-born combatants who fought in the American Civil War while the Kingdom of Hawaii was still an independent nation.
Kong Tai Heong was a trained obstetrician who was the first Chinese woman to practice medicine in Hawaii. Also certified as a midwife, she delivered babies for the Hawaiian, Portuguese and Chinese populations in Honolulu, practicing for over fifty years. In 1946, she was credited by Robert Ripley as having delivered more babies than any other private practitioner in the United States.
Kitty Tsui is a Chinese American author, poet, actor, and bodybuilder. She is the first recorded Chinese American lesbian to be a published author.