| Growing Up American:
The Challenge Confronting Children of Vietnamese Manicurists in the United States
"In a land of immigrants, one was not an alien but simply the latest arrival."
- Rudolf Arnheim
is a known fact that Vietnamese immigrants own the majority of nail
salons in the United States, especially in California. They have
monopolized the business because of
their sacrifices and willingness to lower the price on manicures and
pedicures. Many of the manicurists have large families and the kids
begin to work in the salon when they reach the legal age to work. We
can easily read about the hardships
that the Vietnamese had to go through during their immigration to the
United States. We also can read about the toxins that circulate
throughout the nail salons and affect the health and working ability of
the manicurists. They are low wageworkers that must sacrifice to make a
people normally do not consider is how hard the lives are for the
children of Vietnamese manicurists. The children are largely
impacted by their parents' low wage job and many work in the nail
salons alongside their parents when they are able to work.
In this hypertext, I have given a new perspective on the lives of the
kids who work alongside their parents, or just grow up with their
Vietnamese manicurists' parents.
I have interviewed a young woman
who grew up working on the weekends and during the summers in her
parents' nail salon and I have also interviewed different peers I know
who have parents who fled from Vietnam after the fall of Saigon and are
now low wage workers in the United States to gain a better sense of
what life is like in general for the children of low wage Vietnamese
To know why I chose this particular topic for my hypertext, it is important and crucial to read the different pages I have set up.