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Sui Sin Far Bibliography Template

Eaton was first recuperated by Chin, et al. 1974, the first anthology of Asian American literature, but this work did not select any of her writings. It was the authors of Solberg 1981 and Ling 1983 who brought Eaton to critical attention. Ling 1990 and Ling 1994 (cited under Gender Studies and Feminist Criticism) were the first texts to explore Eaton’s feminism. The 1990s were a fruitful time in Eaton studies. Ammons 1991 provides important scholarship on Eaton that is still stimulating to scholars in the early 21st century. White-Parks 1995 was the first, often considered definitive, critical biography on Eaton and was accompanied by the publication of Mrs. Spring Fragrance and Other Writings (Ling and White-Parks 1995, cited under Editions). Yin 1991 (cited under Biraciality, Hybridity, and “Eurasianness”) joined the reinvigorating interest in Eaton and analyzed her major stories in relation to identity formation. Yin 2000, revised from its author’s dissertation, expands on his earlier study of Eaton, contending that she represents a Eurasian consciousness reaching beyond Chinese communities. Chapman 2012 explains the author’s archival research methodology for recovering Eaton and challenges our understanding of her cultural position, authorship, oeuvre, politics, and popularity.

  • Ammons, Elizabeth. “Audacious Words: Sui Sin Far’s Mrs. Spring Fragrance.” In Conflicting Stories: American Women Writers at the Turn into the Twentieth Century. By Elizabeth Ammons, 105–120. New York: Oxford University Press, 1991.

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    One of the best early essays on Eaton, analyzing thematically a range of issues and perspectives in Mrs. Spring Fragrance. Stresses the diversity of the themes in Eaton’s work and raises questions on art, voice, and form in her writing that proved seminal for later scholarship.

  • Chapman, Mary. “Finding Edith Eaton.” Legacy 29.2 (2012): 263–269.

    DOI: 10.5250/legacy.29.2.0263E-mail Citation »

    Discusses the author’s strategic archival methodology for recovering Eaton’s uncollected and unknown works and uncovers Eaton’s “The Success of a Mistake” by using a combination of approaches. Expands our awareness of Eaton’s inventive modes of authorship, which Chapman calls “stenographic authorship” (p. 267).

  • Chin, Frank, Jeffery Paul Chan, Lawson Fusao Inada, and Shawn Hsu Wong, eds. Aiiieeeee! An Anthology of Asian-American Writers. Washington, DC: Howard University Press, 1974.

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    The first anthology of Asian American literature. Recuperated Eaton and claimed her as “one of the first to speak for an Asian-American sensibility that was neither Asian nor white American” in the 19th century (p. xxi). Does not include Eaton’s work.

  • Ling, Amy. “Edith Eaton: Pioneer Chinamerican Writer and Feminist.” American Literary Realism 16 (1983): 287–298.

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    One of the earliest assessments of Eaton’s writing, praising her as a pioneering Chinese American writer anteceding Maxine Hong Kingston. Presents a feminist reading of Eaton.

  • Ling, Amy. “Pioneers and Paradigms: The Eaton Sisters.” In Between Worlds: Women Writers of Chinese Ancestry. By Amy Ling, 21–55. New York: Pergamon, 1990.

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    Offers much needed bibliographic and biographical material that served as an impetus to further research on Eaton. Argues against the polarization of the sisters; instead asserts that both writers’ adoption of different authorial personas indicates “alternative tactics of survival and negotiation within a hostile environment” (p. 26).

  • Solberg, S. E. “Sui Sin Far/Edith Eaton: The First Chinese-American Fictionist.” MELUS 8.1 (1981): 27–39.

    DOI: 10.2307/467366E-mail Citation »

    The first scholarly article to recuperate Eaton. Built on William Purviance Fenn’s consideration of Chinese American literature, the article examines the genre, the subject matter, and the difficulties Eaton’s stories reflect. Also the first work to look at the New York Times obituary on Eaton by her sister Winnifred Eaton.

  • White-Parks, Annette. Sui Sin Far/Edith Maude Eaton: A Literary Biography. Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1995.

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    A fundamental text that recovered Eaton and made her a canonical writer in both North American and Asian American literature. Meticulously details Eaton’s life and work. The exhaustive bibliography is helpful for students and researchers.

  • Yin, Xiao-huang. “The Voice of a Eurasian.” In Chinese American Literature since the 1850s. By Xiao-huang Yin, 85–116. Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 2000.

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    Gives a thorough assessment of Eaton’s writing in relation to the themes of acculturation, miscegenation and Eurasians, and racial relations. Contends that Eaton’s work reaches far beyond the realm of the Chinese American experience, hence surpassing the Chinese cultural boundaries and serving as a link with white Americans.

  • Sui Sin Far
    BornEdith Maude Eaton
    (1865-03-15)March 15, 1865
    Macclesfield, Cheshire, England
    DiedApril 7, 1914(1914-04-07) (aged 49)
    Montreal, Quebec, Canada
    Genrejournalism, short stories
    SubjectChinese-American life
    Notable worksMrs. Spring Fragrance
    "Leaves from the Mental Portfolio of a Eurasian"
    RelativesOnoto Watanna

    Sui Sin Far (Chinese: 水仙花; pinyin: Shuǐ Xiān Huā, born Edith Maude Eaton; 15 March 1865 – 7 April 1914) was an author known for her writing about Chinese people in North America and the Chinese American experience. "Sui Sin Far", her pen name, is the Cantonese name of the narcissus flower, popular amongst Chinese people.

    Life account[edit]

    Born in Macclesfield, Cheshire, England, Far was the daughter of Englishman Edward Eaton, a merchant who met her Chinese mother while on a business trip to Shanghai, China.[1] Her mother was Grace "Lotus Blossom" Trefusis, the adopted daughter of English missionaries.

    Far was the oldest daughter and second child of fourteen children. In the early 1870s, her family left England to live in Hudson, New York, United States, but stayed there only a short time before relocating to Montreal, Quebec, Canada. Her father struggled to make a living and the large family went through difficult times. Because of their poverty, at a young age, Far left school to work in order to help support her family. Nonetheless, the children were educated at home and raised in an intellectually stimulating environment that saw both Far and her younger sister Winnifred Eaton, who wrote under the pen name Onoto Watanna, become successful writers.

    Eaton began writing as a young girl; her articles on the Chinese people were accepted for publication in Montreal's English-language newspapers, the Montreal Star and the Daily Witness. She eventually left Montreal to live in the United States, first in San Francisco, then in Seattle, before going to the east coast to work in Boston. While working as a legal secretary she continued to write and although her appearance and manners would have allowed her to easily pass as an Englishwoman, she asserted her Chinese heritage and wrote articles that told what life was like for a Chinese woman in white America. First published in 1896, her fictional stories about Chinese Americans were a reasoned appeal for her society's acceptance of working-class Chinese at a time when the United States Congress maintained the Chinese Exclusion Act, which banned Chinese immigration to the United States.

    Over the ensuing years, Far wrote a number of short stories and newspaper articles while working on her first collection of fiction. Published in June 1912, Mrs. Spring Fragrance, was a collection of linked short stories marketed as a novel.

    Far never married and died in Montreal. She is interred in Mount Royal Cemetery.

    A study of Far and her life, Sui Sin Far/Edith Maude Eaton: A Literary Biography by Annette White-Parks, was published in 1995.

    Partial bibliography[edit]

    See also[edit]


    External links[edit]

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