Asian Pacific Islander Desi Topics

Media/social portrayal of API community


Asian American Dreams: The Emergence of an American People by Helen Zia

Citation: Zia, Helen. (2000). Asian American dreams: the emergence of an American people. New York :Farrar, Straus and Giroux,


Dragon Ladies: Asian American Feminists Breathe Fire by Sonia Shah

Citation: Shah, S. (1997). Dragon ladies: Asian American feminists breathe fire. Boston: South End Press.

Racial Triangulation - Perpetual Foreigner 


The Racial Triangulation of Asian Americans 

Citation: KIM, C. J. (1999). The Racial Triangulation of Asian Americans. Politics & Society, 27(1), 105–138.

Yellow Peril - Xenophobia


How COVID-19 Coronavirus Is Uncovering Anti-Asian Racism 

Coronavirus Fears Show How “Model Minority” Asian Americans Can Become “Yellow Peril” 

If We Called Ourselves Yellow (History of Yellow Peril) 

Model Minority Myth


“Unpacking the Model Minority Myth”  

What is the Model Minority Myth Stereotype? What Can You Do?

“Beyond the Model Minority Myth”

The Role of API Activists in Social Movements


“On Strike!” San Francisco State College Strike, 1968-69: The Role of Asian American Students

Citation: Karen Umemoto (1989) “On Strike!” San Francisco State College Strike, 1968–69: The Role of Asian American Students, Amerasia Journal, 15:1, 3-41, DOI: 10.17953/amer.15.1.7213030j5644rx25


Heartbeat of Struggle: The Revolutionary Life of Yuri Kochiyama by Dr. Diane Fujino

Citation: Fujino, D. C. (2005). Heartbeat of struggle: The revolutionary life of Yuri Kochiyama. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.

Colorism within API Communities


Colorism and Bias in Asian American Communities

The Significance of Skin Color in Asian & Asian American Communities

Prevalence of Skin Whitening and Backlash Against Colorism in Asia

COVID-19 Related Zines

Asian American Feminist Antibodies Zine

Unmasking Yellow Peril Zine

A 1983 protest march in Detroit after Vincent Chin’s killers, Ronald Ebens and Michael Nitz, pleaded guilty to charges of manslaughter and were given three months probation and fined $3,000.
Womens March Image
Yuri Kochiyama

Virtual Talks/Workshops

Combating Racism Against Asian Communities in the Midst of COVID-19

A dialogue with Dr. Diane Fujino, Dr. Charmain Chua, and undergraduate Rose Hoang on the rise of anti-Asian hate incidents as a result of the pandemic in conjunction with historical trends of anti-Asian sentiment in the United States. (Link to PowerPoint presentation)


Asian Americans Respond to Racist Comments

Summary: Buzzfeed interviews staff and members of the API community and their reactions to various racist comments and traumas that they have experienced.

The Problem with Apu and the American Immigrant Stories that Aren’t Being Told

Summary: Hari Kondabolu has been thinking about how he fits into America for some time. Growing up the son of Indian immigrants, he has experienced cultural exclusion and negative stereotypes, reflected most potently in the character of Apu from "The Simpsons." He joins Hari Sreenivasan to discuss the documentary he made about Apu, as well as his standup in the age of Trump.

Why Do We Call Asian Americans the Model Minority?

Summary: The Model Minority Myth is a pervasive stereotype of Asian Americans in the United States. The stereotype continues to have a harmful effect on both individuals and Asian American communities as a whole. Asian American communities have long struggled 

to receive federal assistance based on individual community needs. So, how can the U.S. government provide adequate assistance? 

Who is Vincent Chin?

Summary: The killing of Vincent Chin is often cited as a rallying point for Asian Americans, but how many people know who Chin was and what happened to him? An NBC News report.

Why People Risk Their Lives to Bleach Their Skin?

Summary: On this episode of Shady, our host, Lexy Lebsack travels to the Philippines to uncover the toxic reality of skin bleaching. This cultural trend is practicing worldwide even with deadly side effects. Watch this week's Shady to understand the truth about skin bleaching!


UCSB Asian Resource Center

The mission of the Asian Resource Center (ARC) is to educate, promote, and encourage the interaction and dialogue among the diverse ethnic groups within the Asian American community at UCSB. The Center provides a supportive environment for students, staff, faculty, and community members to develop an appreciation for one's identity and to affirm an institutional commitment that recognizes one’s community.

Resources from the Center:

Asian Resource Center - COVID-19 Resource Guide

National Coalition for Asian Pacific American Community Development

The National Coalition for Asian Pacific American Community Development is the first national advocacy organization dedicated to addressing the community development, organizing and advocacy needs of the diverse and rapidly growing Asian-American and Pacific-Islander communities nationwide

Asian American Legal Defense & Education Fund (AALDEF)

The Asian American Legal Defense & Education Fund is the first legal rights organization on the East Coast serving Asian Americans. It was founded by a group of lawyers, law students and community activists who believed that the law should be used as a tool to achieve social and economic justice for Asian Americans and all Americans.

SAALT (South Asian Americans Leading Together)

SAALT is a national nonprofit that addresses the social justice needs of South Asian Americans. SAALT holds a National South Asian Summit biannually to connect activists from various South Asian backgrounds and to address the diverse range of issues facing the community. April’s gathering focused on “the rise in hate violence, xenophobic rhetoric, and anti-immigrant sentiment that have escalated to unprecedented levels.” SAALT also coordinates the National Coalition of South Asian Organizations, a network of community-based organizations that work to strengthen voices on a local and national level.

The Center for Asian Pacific American Women

The Center for Asian Pacific American Women (formerly The Asian Pacific American Women’s Leadership Institute) is the only national, nonprofit organization dedicated to enhancing and enriching leadership skills for Asian-American and Pacific-Islander women leaders. Its mission is to address the challenges facing Asian-American and Pacific-Islander women and to nurture trusteeship within their communities by expanding leadership capacity, fostering awareness of Asian-American and Pacific-Island issues, creating a supportive network of Asian-American and Pacific-Island women and strengthening community.

API Equality - LA

API Equality-LA organizes community members to take action on a variety of issues that affect the API LGBTQ community. Through our campaigns, we work to educate the public, change institutional policies and practices, and transform our communities. Our current campaign focuses on mental health and community wellness. We seek to transform community care by increasing access to LGBTQ affirming and culturally responsive mental healthcare, promoting holistic community wellness, and creating supportive and affirming community spaces for API LGBTQ people.

API Chaya

API Chaya empowers survivors of gender-based violence and human trafficking to gain safety, connection, and wellness.  We build power by educating and mobilizing South Asian, Asian, Pacific Islander, and all immigrant communities to end exploitation, creating a world where all people can heal and thrive. 

The Sikh Coalition

The Sikh Coalition began as a volunteer organization that addressed the wave of hate crimes targeted against the Sikh community in the immediate aftermath of the 9/11 terrorist attacks. Since then, it’s grown into a national network with offices in New York City, Washington, D.C., the San Francisco Bay Area, Los Angeles, and Chicago. The nonprofit has a Legal Program that litigates matters addressing discrimination, as well as a community development program that focuses on civic engagement.