Postcolonial literature about the South Seas, or Nanyang, examines the history of Chinese migration, localization, and interethnic exchange in Southeast Asia, where Sinophone settler cultures evolved independently by adapting to their New World and mingling with native cultures. Writing the South Seas explains why Nanyang encounters, neglected by most literary histories, should be considered crucial to the national literatures of China and Southeast Asia.
Brian Bernards is associate professor of East Asian languages and cultures at the University of Southern California. He is the coeditor of Sinophone Studies: A Critical Reader. * Journal of Postcolonial Writing *