Peer Reviewed Journal Articles

Eisen, Daniel B. 2018. “Filipinos Love Serving Others: Negotiating a Filipino Identity in Hawai’i.” Sociological Perspectives.


Examining how individuals negotiate a Filipino identity in Hawai‘i provides insights into the fluidity and flexibility of racism. Filipino identities in Hawai‘i are often negotiated at the intersections of a Filipino colonial mentality, a local Hawai‘i identity, and racialized structures that marginalize Filipinos. Drawing upon interviews with upwardly mobile individuals who grew up in Hawai‘i, I illuminate how young adults reclaim a Filipino identity after growing up being ashamed of being Filipino. Spurred by experience in higher education the participants worked to affiliate themselves with being Filipino and recast negative stereotypes in positive fashions. Although these reframings of stereotypes enabled one to confidently assert that they were Filipino, they also upheld the negative characterizations of Filipinos that inform their marginalization in Hawai‘i. Ultimately, this research demonstrates the racial ideologies are fluid and flexible, as they can shape identity processes that attempt to construct a positive Filipino identity in Hawai‘i.

Eisen, Daniel B. and Liann Yamashita. Online 2017. "Borrowing from Femininity: The Caring Man, Hybrid Masculinities, and Maintaining Male Dominance. Men and Masculinities.

Prevalent cultural representations of masculinity depict men as aggressive, emotionally distant individuals whose hard and muscular bodies epitomize these traits. These traditional representations of masculinity have also been linked to sexism and male dominance, which has encouraged many men to distance themselves from these representations. This study employed grounded theory methods to analyze interviews with twenty-five men about their understanding and construction of their masculinity. The analysis revealed that some men construct a hybrid masculinity by describing themselves as caring or being in touch with their feminine side to create social distance between themselves and men who adhere to traditional representations of masculinity. While men incorporated what they viewed as feminine characteristics into their identities, they reinforced, rather than challenged, the symbolic boundaries of gender and the resulting gender hierarchy. Ultimately, the men in this study were able to co-opt the language of caring to gain more prestige while reinforcing gender inequality and male dominance.

Eisen, Daniel, Kara Takasaki, and Arlie Tagayuna. 2015. "The Unintended Consequences of Filipino Language and Culture Courses in Hawai'i." Journal Committed to Social Change on Race and Ethnicity 1(2):25-53. [Full Text]

The colonial mentality, a perception of Filipino cultural inferiority, results in many Filipinos distancing themselves from their Filipino heritage. In Hawai‘i, the colonial history of the Philippines is reinforced by the history of Hawai‘i’s plantation era and the creation of a “local” identity, which marginalizes the Filipino community and strengthens the colonial mentality. A content analysis of 105 essays written by Filipino students enrolled in college level Filipino language and culture classes in Hawai‘i was conducted to critically examine whether and how educational curriculum is used to challenge the colonial mentality. Data analysis shows students often entered classrooms with a colonial mentality that they learned through familial socialization and experiences of ethnic discrimination outside of the family. Although these language and culture courses helped students to reconnect with their Filipino heritage, many students developed a positive and essentialist construction of a Filipino identity, which reduced the individual’s agency in constructing an identity and facilitated processes of othering.

Eisen, Daniel B. 2012. “Developing a Critical Lens: Using Photography to Teach Sociology and Create Critical Thinkers.” Teaching Sociology 40(4): 349-59.

Sociology instructors strive not only to teach their students the essential aspects of sociology but also to help students develop their critical thinking abilities. One way to help students become better critical thinkers is to assign projects that encourage students to critically assess their world by relating the course content to their everyday world. This article details a photography project that has been assigned in lower level sociology courses at a four-year university and a community college. The project has been successful in encouraging students to develop their critical thinking skills and locate course material within the context of their everyday lived experiences. Examples from projects and a content analysis of 87 anonymous reflection papers demonstrate that the project allows students to (1) relate the course material to their everyday world, (2) engage in an intellectually challenging assignment, (3) critically examine their taken-for-granted worlds, and (4) have fun while completing a challenging academic exercise.

Book Chapters

Eisen, Daniel B. 2015. “Constructing ‘Hawaiian,’ Post-Racial Narratives, and Social Boundaries at a Predominantly White University.” in College Students’ Experiences of Power and Marginality: Sharing Spaces and Negotiating Differences, edited by E.M. Lee and C. LaDousa. New York: Routledge.

Other Academic Publications

Eisen, Daniel B. 2017. [Review of The Latinos of Asia: How Filipinos Break the Rules of Race.] Ethnic and Racial Studies. [Article Link]

Eisen, Daniel B. 2015. [Review of Multiple Identities: Migrants, Ethnicity, and Membership.Contemporary Sociology: A Journal of Reviews 44(6):855-857.

Eisen, Daniel B. 2014. "Identity Formation." Pp. 481-485 in Asian American Society: An Encyclopedia, edited by M.Y. Danico. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage. 

Public Sociology Publications

Eisen, Daniel B. April 2015. “The Noble Fighter and the Shadows of Empire.” The Allrounder. [Full Text]

Boykoff, Jules and Daniel B. Eisen. December 2014. “Gilmore Junio’s Selfless Act: The Whispers of Olympic and Ethnic Culture.” The Allrounder. [Full Text]

Eisen, Daniel B. May 2016. "What You Do Matters." Fil-Am Courier. Honolulu, Hawaii. 
"Filipino Scholar Examines Relationship Between Filipino, Asian, and Latino" (April 2016) [Full Text]
"Nurturing Identity Development: A Step in Cultivating Communities" (March 2016) [Full Text]
"The Power of Travel and Storytelling in Identity Formation" (January 2016) [Full Text]
"What is a Filipino Issue?" (December 2015)
"Public Celebrations of Filipino Culture are Important" (October 2015) [Full Text]
"Parts Unknown: Different Presentation, Same Story" (July 2015) [Full Text]
"The Importance of Remembering History" (June 2015)
"Cultural Practices as Opportunities for Cultural Exploration" (May 2015) [Full Text]
"The Less than Perfect Answer to How Do We Fix the Problem" (April 2015) [Full Text]
"Look I'm on TV: Representation of Diversity on Television" (March 2015) [Full Text]
"Make Racial Harmony Your New Year's Resolution" (January 2015) [Full Text]
"How Mocking Filipino Accents Marginalizes Our Identity" (December 2014) [Full Text]
"Do You Speak Tagalog?" (November 2014) [Full Text]
"Inspiring Youth by Coming Out as a Role Model Who is Filipino" (October 2014) [Full Text]
"Food as Gateway to Filipino Culture" (August 2014) [Full Text]
"Simple Linguistic Change May Have Profound Effect" (July 2014) [Full Text]
"On Filipinos in the Service Sector" (June 2014)
"Embrace Opportunities to Combat the Colonial Mentality" (May 2014) [Full Text]
"Diversity is More than a Pie Chart" (April 2014) [Full Text]