Most Americans are immigrants or descendants of immigrants with a rich cultural history. But what happens to one’s cultural identity when they are several generations removed from their roots? Searching for Roots in Canton grapples with this issue for Nathan Fong and Alana Woods Chan, two Chinese Americans, as they go straight to the source, Canton (Guangdong), China, the motherland of most Chinese Americans.
Why did their families leave China to be in the U.S. in the first place? What did they do when they got to America? How did they survive?Historian and mentor, Al Cheng, has spent over twenty years taking Chinese Americans to China to search for their roots. His passion lies in his belief that, “Strong roots build strong characters, strong characters create strong communities, and strong communities build a strong country. And that’s the basis for world peace.”
Al is in charge of finding the exact locations of their ancestral villages. He also accompanies Nathan and Alana as they learn about their family histories and he supports them emotionally as they experience psychological breakthroughs during the trip.