- Read books with AAPI Connections. The Library catalog has many books by AANHPI authors or that explore AANHPI history and culture.
- Watch a movie that puts AANHPI characters and culture in the lead. You can find great selections including Raya and the Last Dragon, Minari, Whale Rider, Crazy Rich Asians and Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon in our catalog. You can find more movies suggestions here.
- Learn about the lives of great AANHPI Americans. There are more than 450 biographical essays in Great Lives from History: Asian and Pacific Islander Americans. It features religious, political and business leaders, scientists, artists, inventors, philosophers and social activists. It is available in print at ESA in the Reference Collection or online via Salem Press*.
- Read some of the articles related to Asian-Pacific American Heritage Month that are available through the Special Reports on NewsBank*.
- Use Mango Languages* to begin to learn a new language. Mango has more than a dozen AANHPI languages including Chinese, Japanese, Hawaiian, Punjabi, Javanese and Bengali.
- Learn about history or culture with a course via Universal Class** or the Great Courses. Possible courses include Japanese Culture Studies, Chinese Culture Studies, A History of India and Great Minds of the Eastern Intellectual Tradition.
May is AANHPI Heritage Month
May is Asian American, Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander Heritage Month
In 1978, House Joint Resolution 1007 requested that President Jimmy Carter designate May 4-10 as Asian/Pacific American Heritage Week. Lawmakers chose May because of its historical significance for the Japanese and Chinese communities. For the next ten years, subsequent presidents issued similar proclamations. In 1990, Congress and President George H.W. Bush extended the week into a full month. Two years later, Congress passed Public Law 102-450 which authorized the annual commemoration. President Obama and President Biden both adjusted the name of the celebration and since 2021, it has been known as Asian American, Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander (AANHPI) Heritage Month.
In addition to Native Hawaiians, the term AANHPI includes nearly 50 distinct ethnic groups who speak over 100 languages. These groups trace their ancestry to East and Southeast Asia, the Indian subcontinent and the Pacific Islands of Melanesia. Micronesia and Polynesia. According to the United States Census Bureau, Asian Americans make up the largest part of the AANHPI population with 24 million people. More than half of these individuals are of Chinese, Asian Indian or Filipino descent. The Bureau also reports that about 1.7 million Americans identify as having Native Hawaiian, Samoan, Chamorro, Tongan or another Pacific Islander heritage.
And while this month is primarily a celebration of heritage, we cannot do so without acknowledging history. As President Jimmy Carter said in his original proclamation, we have not always fully appreciated the significant role AANHPI Americans have played in the “creation of a dynamic and pluralistic America, with their enormous contributions to our science, arts, industry, government and commerce.” These contributions, historical events, and especially the atrocities involving people of AANHPI descent cannot be forgotten.
Here are some ways that The Library can help you learn about, appreciate and celebrate AANHPI Heritage Month:
For more information related to AANHPI Heritage Month, visit the Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month website. Here you will find links to collections curated by The Library of Congress, National Archives and Records Administration, National Endowment for the Humanities, National Gallery of Art, National Park Service, Smithsonian Institution and United States Holocaust Memorial Museum.
Submitted by Lynette, Information Services Assistant
* You will need your Library card number and PIN.
** You must use the Libby app to get free access Universal Class.