In arguing his thesis, the author uses multiple sources to show the diverse patterns intimacy when the Chinese, who lived in the hinterland of British Columbia, are compared with their counterparts in Chinatowns, with the latter showing more liberalism. One of the categories of sources used by the author to argue his thesis is the reports prepared by different scholars at the time. These reports give accounts on different aspects that are important to the author’s thesis. The Canadian census is also utilized richly as a source, especially where statistical information to track the growth of Chinese immigrants into Canada is required. Besides these sources, the author also uses articles and books written by different scholars on the issue of Chinese immigrants into Canada. Although there is a generous use of statistical information in the article, the author relies on qualitative evidence regarding the customers of the Chinese, accounts from other scholars and information contained in reports to explicate the central argument of the article (Barman, 2013).
The central argument of the author is that venturing further beyond the Chinatowns offers a richer perspective on the presence of the Chinese in early British Columbia. The contention of the author is that the fact that the Chinese traditions were not as binding for the Chinese living in the hinterland as they were for those living in the Chinatowns could explain the increase in the numbers of the Chinese in early British Columbia. The analysis section of this paper will seek to prove the veracity of these arguments by the author. The analysis section will, in addition, assess the development of the arguments supporting the central argument, assess the sufficiency of the evidence used to support the claims the author made as well as the appropriateness of the evidence used. Additionally, the analysis section will vet the article for bias, one-sidedness of thought and argument, whether the claims made by the author are aligned to any literature and whether they challenge existing work on the topic (Barman, 2013).
At the very beginning, Barman acknowledges and challenges the premise that the presence of the Chinese in early British Columbia can be attributed to Chinatowns. The premise is the finding of a large number of scholars who the author has listed as references. In validating the challenge on existing literature, the author provides and alternative in which he argues that the men outside of the Chinatowns provide a different perspective on the presence of the Chinese in early British Columbia. The claim of the author is not unfounded. Instead, it is based on the analysis of several sources. Through the analysis of these sources, the author found that there were glaring inconsistencies in the patterns of intimacy where the Chinese living in the Chinatowns and the Chinese who lived in the hinterland of British Columbia were concerned. With statistical accuracy, Barman found that 16.67% of the Chinese men who formed families by engaging in intimacy did not involve women of Chinese heritage, but rather local indigenous women. These findings validate the central argument of the author. These findings also give the author the academic mandate to explore the issue further (Barman, 2013).
The article is developed very well. The manner in which the ideas are arranged is logical. As highlighted above, the author first makes the claim upon which the paper is based. The author also uses several sources to lay a foundation for the claim. This is vital because it proves to the reader that the claim is not arbitrary; that it is well thought, founded and worth the readers time and effort. The author goes further to identify limitations in the sources upon which the claim is founded. Barman argues that the encounters in which Chinese men that live in the hinterland of the British Columbia sired children and formed families with indigenous women were noted in existing literature, such encounters had prior to this article not been interrogated or aggregated together. The author remedies this situation by highlighting thirty relationships between Chinese men and indigenous women in British Columbia. This not only adds to existing literature but also validates the central argument of the article that attention further beyond Chinatown explains the presence of the Chinese in early British Columbia. Additionally, the style of the author shows that the ideas forming the article are well delineated in both a logical and orderly fashion (Barman, 2013).
The sheer number of sources that the author uses in the article shows that the author had sufficient sources to support the central argument of the article. Even more impressive is the quality of the sources and the manner in which they are used to support the central argument of the paper and the claims made by the author. For instance, the author uses reports detailing the migration of the Chinese into Canada to track the number of Chinese immigrants in British Columbia. These statistics give an indication of the number of the Chinese in British Columbia. The author the uses census data to keep track of the immigrants and the people of Chinese Descent, who were born in British Columbia as a result of the intimate relationships between the Chinese men and the indigenous women. The author also uses reputable sources when he argues that the diverse intimate patterns seen in the Chinese men ranged from visits back to China for conjugal visits with the wives that were left behind, intimate relationships with Chinese prostitutes and even though strange based on the Chinese traditions, intimate relationships with indigenous women (Barman, 2013).
As highlighted earlier, the author sought to explore the men outside Chinatowns in order to understand better the presence of the Chinese in early British Columbia. The analysis section of this paper would be insufficient if it did not vet the efforts of the author. It is vital to determine whether the efforts of the author were justified; whether the venture of the author benefited the academic fraternity in any manner. Following his argument, the concepts in the sources that the author used to develop his thesis and the analysis performed therein, it is suffice saying that the efforts of the author benefited the academic fraternity. Through the different approach employed by the author, one can understand the presence of the Chinese in early British Columbia in a better manner compared to the earlier focus on Chinatowns. Besides this, the efforts of the author addressed assumptions that clouded the earlier understanding of the presence of the Chinese in the early British Columbia. The author also highlighted gaps in information in the existing literature that was reviewed in order to build a foundation for the claims upon which the article is based. This also conferred some benefits to the academic fraternity. By addressing the gaps in information, Barman aggregated the accounts of relationships between Chinese men and indigenous women for posterity (Barman, 2013).
Barman attempted a challenging feat in authoring this article. The premise upon which the article is based challenges existing literature. It also challenges assumptions that have been used in informing numerous publications and graduate theses on the migration of the Chinese into other regions. Barman used grounded claims to build the arguments in the article. Where his claims challenged existing knowledge, Barman used the sources detailing the same knowledge to validate his claims. The use of primary and secondary in the article helps the author develop and support his claims. The author is able to benefit the academic fraternity in addition to proving his thesis that there is more beyond the Chinatowns that helps one understand the presence of the Chinese in early British Columbia.
Barman, J. (2013). Beyond Chinatown: Chinese men and indigenous women in early British Columbia. BC Studies: The British Columbian Quarterly, 177: 39-64.