Sunday, January 31, 2010
Adventures in Multicutural Living: The 'Asian fail' and having fun with the model-minority myth and other stereotypes - AnnArbor.com
From IMDiversity.com Asian American Village Editor Frances Kai-Hwa Wang
Three summers ago, my 70-year-old father, who has been after me for years to finish my PhD, had a sudden post-retirement revelation, “It does not matter how many degrees you have; what matters is that you are a good person and live a happy life.”
He then turned to the kids and said, “You do not have to get good grades or go to a good college, you just have to learn how to be a good person and be happy.”
The children and I stared at him, mouths dropped open in disbelief, “Who are you and what have you done with my real father?” (click on link for more)
The 'Asian fail' and having fun with the model-minority myth and other stereotypes - AnnArbor.com
Sunday, January 24, 2010
Adventures in Multicultural Living: We gain so much from wading in the water of each other's cultural experiences - AnnArbor.com
IMDiversity.com Asian American Village Editor Frances Kai-Hwa Wang's Adventures in Multicultural Living column:
Two years ago, my father’s choir at the University of Hawaii was invited to sing at a big international diversity concert at Lincoln Center in New York for MLK Day. Choirs from around the world had been invited to sing together, and a Hawaiian choir adds instant diversity with its multicultural population of Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Filipino, Portuguese, Caucasians and native Hawaiians. That summer, over a breakfast of Chinese pancakes and Portuguese sausage, my father told us about the difficulties he had had the night before at choir practice pronouncing the words in the spirituals that they were learning, “You have to say the words like a Negro,” he said.
Twelve-year-old Hao Hao gently corrected him: “African American. These days you should say African American.” (I bet Senator Reid wishes his grandchildren had told him this, too.) (click on link for more)
We gain so much from wading in the water of each other's cultural experiences - AnnArbor.com
Sunday, January 17, 2010
Adventures in Multicultural Living: Living in harmony in a great world house on MLK Day - AnnArbor.com
IMDiversity.com Asian American Village editor Frances Kai-Hwa Wang writes in her Adventures in Multicultural Living Column:
In Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s Nobel Peace Prize lecture, given in 1964, he talks about the idea of a house, “We have inherited a big house, a great ‘world house’ in which we have to live together - black and white, Easterners and Westerners, Gentiles and Jews, Catholics and Protestants, Moslem and Hindu, a family unduly separated in ideas, culture, and interests who, because we can never again live without each other, must learn, somehow, in this one big world, to live with each other.”
I love the imagery of that house, so easy to picture. A nice Victorian, neat and trim, brightly painted, purple and pink, warm lights shining through lace curtains, with all the peoples of the world living in harmony together inside - everyone happily cooking together, feasting and celebrating, sharing the bounty of the garden, raking leaves and shoveling snow with the seasons, emptying the dishwasher, doing the laundry, vacuuming the floor, fixing the car, fighting for the bathroom…
Wait. But how do you do that, exactly? (click on link for more)
Living in harmony in a great world house on MLK Day - AnnArbor.com
Sunday, January 10, 2010
From IMDiversity.com Asian American Village Editor Frances Kai-Hwa Wang:
At 10:00 pm every Friday night, Mr. Pao, the Administrator of Students, rings the bell for everyone to go home, and…nobody moves. What kind of Chinese School is this that nobody is anxious to leave at 10:00 pm on a Friday night? Everyone, parents and teachers and students, are still talking and laughing, lingering a few more moments together, just one more person to catch. I slowly round up all my children from all their extracurricular classes—gu zheng, kung fu, yo-yo, art—find their coats, pick up their backpacks, and slowly make our way towards the front door.
But where is Little Brother?
I walk up and down all the hallways, ask the parents of all his little friends, check the upstairs and the gym and outside the back door. I finally find him in the multipurpose room, in the center of a big circle of teenagers, all twice his height (which is why I did not see him earlier), holding forth about his favorite Pokemon. Serious stuff.
Two of the teenagers, Brian and Stephanie, are fighting over him again, “Who do you like better? Me or her?” (click on link for more)
Little Brother's many older brothers - AnnArbor.com
Sunday, January 03, 2010
Adventures in Multicultural Living: Swine Flu: How the "colorblind" H1N1 virus reveals our cultural differences - AnnArbor.com
From IMDiversity.com Asian American Village Editor, Frances Kai-Hwa Wang:
I was invited to a special ethnic media briefing at Dossin Great Lakes Museum on Belle Isle organized by New America Media (informally known as the AP of the Ethnic Press) with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to get the word out about the H1N1 (swine flu) virus and vaccine to our ethnic communities.
At first, I was naively surprised to receive this invitation. I thought that the H1N1 virus ought to be “colorblind” and not care about race, ethnicity, or culture; that it ought to make our bodies sick the same way. Why would ethnic communities need special briefings? (click on link for more)
Swine Flu: How the "colorblind" H1N1 virus reveals our cultural differences - AnnArbor.com