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Friday, October 8 • 4:00pm - 5:00pm
Author - Biography - Empire’s Mistress, Starring Isabel Rosario Cooper

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A failed love affair between a venerated war hero and a young Filipina actress caught within the violent histories of U.S. imperialism

In Empire's Mistress Vernadette Vicuña Gonzalez follows the life of Filipina vaudeville and film actress Isabel Rosario Cooper, who was the mistress of General Douglas MacArthur. If mentioned at all, their relationship exists only as a salacious footnote in MacArthur's biography—a failed love affair between a venerated war hero and a young woman of Filipino and American heritage. Following Cooper from the Philippines to Washington, D.C. to Hollywood, where she died penniless, Gonzalez frames her not as a tragic heroine, but as someone caught within the violent histories of U.S. imperialism.

avatar for Kim Compoc

Kim Compoc

Kim Compoc is an assistant professor of history at University of Hawaiʻi - West O‘ahu. Her work has been published in Amerasia, Journal of Asian American Studies, Frontiers: A Women’s Studies Journal, and Q&A: Voices from Queer Asian North America.

avatar for Vernadette Vicuña Gonzales

Vernadette Vicuña Gonzales

Vernadette Gonzalez is Professor of American Studies and Director of the Honors Program at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa. She is the author of two books, Securing Paradise: Tourism and Militarism in Hawai‘i and the Philippines (2013) and Empire's Mistress, Starring Isabel... Read More →

Friday October 8, 2021 4:00pm - 5:00pm HST