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Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month: Digital Resources

Join the TCC libraries in celebrating generations of Asian and Pacific Islanders who have enriched America's history.

Use this page to browse e-books, explore databases, and watch engaging films on Asian/Pacific Americans.

E-books

A family sits at a table and eats together

Asian American Food Culture

McLean's book details the rise of Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Filipino, and Vietnamese restaurants in the United States and discusses the contemporary dining options found in ethnic enclaves; introduces celebratory dining, providing an overview of typical festive foods eaten on key occasions; and explores the use of food as medicine among Asian Americans.  

a multi-generational family stands on a beach with arms around each other

Caring Across Generations

In Caring Across Generations, Grace J. Yoo and Barbara W. Kim explore how earlier experiences helping immigrant parents navigate American society have prepared Korean American children for negotiating and redefining the traditional gender norms, close familial relationships, and cultural practices that their parents expect them to adhere to as they reach adulthood. 

Ali Wong, wearing a red sequined dress, sits on an upholstered chair on a stage

Dear Girls

Ali Wong shares the wisdom she's learned from a life in comedy and reveals stories from her life off stage, including the brutal single life in New York (i.e. the inevitable confrontation with erectile dysfunction), reconnecting with her roots (and drinking snake blood) in Vietnam, tales of being a wild child growing up in San Francisco, and parenting war stories. Though addressed to her daughters, Ali Wong's letters are absurdly funny, surprisingly moving, and enlightening (and gross) for all. 

a closed eye with rainbow-colored eyelashes on a white background

Fairest

A singular, beautifully written coming-of-age memoir of a Filipino boy with albinism whose story travels from an immigrant childhood to Harvard to a gender transition and illuminates the illusions of race, disability, and gender. 

a man in a gray jacket stands on a boat; his right hand extended to hold on to a rusted metal post

Far East, down South

In sharp contrast to the "melting pot" reputation of the United States, the American South--with its history of slavery, Jim Crow, and the civil rights movement--has been perceived in stark and simplistic demographic terms. In Far East, Down South, editors Raymond A. Mohl, John E. Van Sant, and Chizuru Saeki provide a collection of essential essays that restores and explores an overlooked part of the South's story--that of Asian immigration to the region.   These essays form a comprehensive overview of key episodes and issues in the history of Asian immigrants to the South. 

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Frankly in Love

Frank Li has two names. There's Frank Li, his American name. Then there's Sung-Min Li, his Korean name. No one uses his Korean name, not even his parents, and he barely speaks any Korean. Even so, his parents still expect him to end up with a nice Korean girl--which is a problem, since Frank is finally dating the girl of his dreams: Brit Means. Brit, who is funny and nerdy just like him. Brit . . . who is white. As Frank falls in love for the very first time, he's forced to confront the fact that while his parents sacrificed everything to raise him in the land of opportunity, their traditional expectations don't leave a lot of room for him to be a regular American teen. 

three women wearing brightly colored clothing, sitting cross-legged

If They Come for Us

From a co-creator of the Emmy-nominated web series Brown Girls comes an imaginative, soulful debut poetry that collection captures the experiences of being a young Pakistani Muslim woman in contemporary America. Orphaned as a child, Fatimah Asghar grapples with coming of age and navigating questions of sexuality and race without the guidance of a mother or father. These poems at once bear anguish, joy, vulnerability, and compassion, while also exploring the many facets of violence: how it persists within us, how it is inherited across generations, and how it manifests itself in our relationships. 

book cover image includes a kaleidoscope-style burst of color

The Incendiaries

Phoebe and Will meet in their first month at prestigious Edwards University. Phoebe is a glamorous girl who blames herself for her mother's death. Will is a misfit who transfers to Edwards from Bible college, waiting tables in secret to get by. What he knows for sure is that he loves Phoebe. Grieving and guilt-ridden, Phoebe is increasingly drawn into a religious group. When the group bombs several buildings in the name of faith, killing five people, Phoebe disappears. Will devotes himself to finding her, tilting into obsession himself, seeking answers to what happened and if she could have been responsible.

illustration of a white sun rising over a black horizon

The Latinos of Asia

Is race only about the color of your skin? In The Latinos of Asia, Anthony Christian Ocampo shows that what "color" you are depends largely on your social context. Filipino Americans, for example, helped establish the Asian American movement and are classified by the U.S. Census as Asian. But the legacy of Spanish colonialism in the Philippines means that they share many cultural characteristics with Latinos, such as last names, religion, and language. Thus, Filipinos' "color"--their sense of connection with other racial groups--changes depending on their social context.  Amplifying their voices, Ocampo illustrates how second-generation Filipino Americans' racial identities change depending on the communities they grow up in, the schools they attend, and the people they befriend. 

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Minor Feelings

Poet and essayist Cathy Park Hong fearlessly and provocatively blends memoir, cultural criticism, and history to expose fresh truths about racialized consciousness in America. This collection is vulnerable, humorous, and provocative--and its relentless and riveting pursuit of vital questions around family and friendship, art and politics, identity and individuality, will change the way you think about our world. Binding these essays together is Hong's theory of "minor feelings." These "minor feelings" occur when American optimism contradicts your own reality--when you believe the lies you're told about your own racial identity. A radically honest work of art, Minor Feelings forms a portrait of one Asian American psyche--and of a writer's search to both uncover and speak the truth. 

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Phoenix Eyes and Other Stories

Russell Charles Leong shows an astonishing range in this new collection of stories. From struggling war refugees to monks, intellectuals to sex workers, his characters are both linked and separated by their experiences as modern Asians and Asian Americans. In styles ranging from naturalism to high-camp parody, Leong goes beneath stereotypes of immigrant and American-born Chinese, hustlers and academics, Buddhist priests and street people. 

book cover image - photo of a music speaker with human faces painted on it

Tropical Renditions

In Tropical Renditions Christine Bacareza Balance examines how the performance and reception of post-World War II Filipino and Filipino American popular music provide crucial tools for composing Filipino identities, publics, and politics. To understand this dynamic, Balance advocates for a "disobedient listening" that reveals how Filipino musicians challenge dominant racialized U.S. imperialist tropes of Filipinos as primitive, childlike, derivative, and mimetic. 

a mother and daughter sit on a bench; seen from the back

What We Carry

Maya Shanbhag Lang grew up idolizing her brilliant mother, an accomplished physician who immigrated to the U.S. from India and completed her residency all while raising her children and keeping a traditional Indian home. Maya's mother had always been a source of support--until Maya became a mother herself. Then the parent who had once been so capable and attentive became suddenly and inexplicably unavailable. Struggling to understand this abrupt change, Maya searches for answers and soon learns that her mother is living with Alzheimer's.  Absorbing, moving, and raw, What We Carry is a memoir about mothers and daughters, lies and truths, receiving and giving care, and how we cannot grow up until we fully understand the people who raised us. 

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Where Reasons End

Yiyun Li meets life's deepest sorrows as she imagines a conversation between a mother and child in a timeless world. Composed in the months after she lost a child to suicide, Where Reasons End trespasses into the space between life and death as mother and child talk, free from old images and narratives. Deeply moving, these conversations portray the love and complexity of a relationship. Written with originality, precision, and poise, Where Reasons End is suffused with intimacy, inescapable pain, and fierce love.

CultureGrams Database

Streaming Videos: Pacific Islanders

For more films and documentaries about Pacific Islanders, visit the Pacific Islanders in Communications website.


 

Streaming Videos: Asian Americans, a PBS Series

This PBS series traces the story of Asian Americans, spanning 150 years of immigration, racial politics, and cultural innovation. It is a timely look at the role that Asian Americans have played in defining who we are as a nation. An American-born generation straddles their birth country and their familial homelands in Asia. Family loyalties are tested during WWII, when Japanese Americans are held in detention camps and brothers are on opposite sides of the battle.