Chinese American Names: Tradition and Transition
The naming practices of Chinese Americans are the focus of this work. Since Chinese immigration began in the mid19th century, names of immigrants and those of their descendants have been influenced by both Chinese and American name customs. The naming traditions of China are first presented. It is a base for understanding the numerous modifications that may happen to personal names in the interaction between cultures as diametrically opposed as Chinese culture can be from American culture, "itself part of another great tradition, Western civilization." One discovers that surnames are clues to Chinese dialect sounds, that many have been Americanized, that new surnames were created and that, in more recent decades as the Chinese American population has grown, new names practices developed and surnames have proliferated. Included are ideographs to surnames and an overview of their preservation by Americans of Chinese descent.