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Asian American & Pacific Islander History and Culture

This guide will serve as an introduction for any student interested in celebrating Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) History!

Introduction

This guide will serve as an introduction for any student interested in celebrating Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) History!

Goddard Library seeks to celebrate the achievements and cultural contributions of Asian Americans. To help you learn more about Asian American heritage, this libguide has compiled a selection of books, e-books, journals, and online resources that celebrate the writings, ideas, and accomplishments of Asian Americans. 

In light of a recent increase in AAPI discrimination, celebrating the history, culture, and contributions of Asian Americans has never been more important. Racism and exclusion of Asian Americans is nothing new in the United States, yet few are really familiar with the history of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders in this country. This libguide provides resources to works of fiction and non-fiction written by Asian American authors in an effort to amplify and celebrate Asian American authors. 

The image below features Asian American protesters rallying to protest the wrongful conviction of Chol Soo Lee, a young Korean immigrant accused of murder in 1974. While in prison, wrongfully serving a life-sentence for a murder committed for which he was later found to be innocent, Lee was attacked by a member of the Aryan brotherhood, whom he killed in self-defense. For this second charge, Lee was meant to face the death penalty. Thanks to the work of Sacramento investigative journalist K.W. Lee, Chol Soo Lee's story raised public support from the Asian American community at large. The Free Chol Soo Lee movement is emblematic as it features a pan-Asian mobilization of mostly young Asian Americans, and eventually lead to the acquittal of Chol Soo Lee. This example of Asian Americans mobilizing to challenge AAPI discrimination and the US carceral system is just one of many unsung events celebrating the accomplishments of the Asian American community throughout history. 

Supporters of Chol Soo Lee at the Hall of Justice in San Francisco, 1982
Image provided by: Time Magazine, 30/4/2021