Beyond the gilded gates of Google, little has been written about the suburban communities of Silicon Valley. Over the past several decades, the region's booming tech economy spurred rapid population growth, increased racial diversity, and prompted an influx of immigration, especially among highly-skilled and educated migrants from China, Taiwan, and India. At the same time, the response among long-time neighbors and city officials revealed an underbelly of unrest in even the most well-heeled and diverse communities.
Trespassers? takes an intimate look at the everyday life and politics inside Silicon Valley against a backdrop of these dramatic demographic shifts. At the broadest level, it raises questions about the rights of diverse populations to their own piece of the suburban American Dream. It follows one community over several decades as it transforms from a sleepy rural town to a global gateway and one of the nation's largest Asian American majority cities. There, it highlights the passionate endeavors of Asian Americans to make Silicon Valley their home by investing in local schools, neighborhoods, and shopping centers. It also provides a textured tale of the tensions that emerge over this suburb's changing environment. With vivid storytelling, Trespassers? uncovers suburbia as an increasingly important place for immigrants and minorities to register their claim for equality and inclusion.
Willow S. Lung-Amam is Assistant Professor in the Urban Studies and Planning Program at the University of Maryland, College Park. Her scholarship focuses on the link between social inequality and the built environment.
"To a certain extent, Asian Americans and Silicon Valley have become synonymous in recent decades. But most existing work discusses Asian American entrepreneurs or low-skill laborers, high-tech industries and the glass ceiling faced by Asian American employees. Lung-Amam's book, therefore, provides a fresh and insightful perspective: how Asian Americans have transformed daily lives and neighborhoods, including demographic changes, education preferences and practices, shopping malls, and dwelling styles. This is good reading for anyone interested in Silicon Valley, suburban knowledge-based economic centers, and the changing American suburbs in general as a result of economic restructuring and immigration." —Wei Li, Professor, Arizona State University, USA, and Fulbright-Nehru Senior Scholar, Jawajarlal Nehru University, India
"Willow S. Lung-Amam's analysis is particularly new and insightful and will likely spark a lot of discussion and debate."—Wendy Cheng, Assistant Professor of American Studies, Scripps College
"As the model American immigrants...Asian dot-com families have been silently formatting the 21st Century Silicon Valley suburbs for three decades. Lung-Amam's work precisely articulates mansions, high-performing schools, and Asian malls as the three-fold symbolic Asian American norm of the mainstream Americanization."—Dr. Shenglin Elijah Chang, author of The Global Silicon Valley Home