A Unique Culinary Blend– Only in America

In 2006, following hurricanes Katrina and Rita, New Orleans was a ghost town. In the 9th Ward, houses stood empty as the families who had lived in them for generations fled, were rescued from, or were lost in the surge of water as it breached the levees. Following the 1975 Fall of Saigon, thousands of Vietnamese refugees settled throughout the United States. Here in the Pacific Northwest it was a tough process to find homes. In New Orleans; the story was no different. In the Parish of Versailles, the Vietnamese took to fishing, shrimping and other industries in the region. The communities they built up relied heavily on community cohesion and

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Who is American? A National Moment on the Question of Belonging

Ghazala Khan, mother to Humayun Khan, married to Khizr. Her family emigrated here from Pakistan via the United Arab Emirates. Her words raise the question of sacrifice for, and even the responsibility to, a belief that America is a plural society. In front of the nation she and her husband recounted the painful loss of their son, Army Captain Humayun Khan who died during his military tour in Iraq. Mrs. Khan’s own legitimacy in mourning the loss of her son, and even being “allowed” to express her own opinions was challenged by a major party presidential candidate simply because she is of Muslim faith. Read her response to a major political party

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What Purpose Do Ads Such as These Serve in Public/Civic Discourse?

  “As an alumnus of University of Missouri and citizen of Missouri for the past 40+ years, I am deeply disappointed with the utilization of anti-Chinese and anti-Muslim rhetoric that portrays Asian Americans in a derisive light…” — Asian American Chamber of Commerce of St. Louis President Al Li Read his full statement here.   The article from NBC News can be found here: Article   [Teachers: We suggest using this lesson plan from our Honoring Our Journey curriculum set to encourage student discussion and dialogue on the issue of reinforced stereotypes in the media.  

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Lost Story of “Citizen Kahn” (from the New Yorker)

Memory is a fickle thing. “Hot Tamale Louie was the son of nobody knows who, the grandson of nobody knows who, and the great-great-grandson of nobody knows who. He had been selling tamales in Sheridan since Buffalo Bill rode in the town parade, sold them when President Taft came to visit, was still selling them when the Russians sent Sputnik into space and the British sent the Beatles to America. By then, Louie was a local legend, and his murder shocked everyone.” How quickly the town forgot that he was Muslim and a cherished neighbor.   http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2016/06/06/zarif-khans-tamales-and-the-muslims-of-sheridan-wyoming

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Attempting to Close a “Gene-race-nal” Gap

From the San Francisco Chronicle: June 12, 2016 Letters Home: Asian Americans in Support of Black Lives Matter “Dear Mom, Dad, Uncle, Auntie, Grandfather, Grandmother: We need to talk. You may not have grown up around people who are black, but I have. Black people are a fundamental part of my life: they are my friends, my classmates and teammates, my roommates, my family. Today, I’m scared for them.” So begins a powerful letter involving hundreds of Asian American collaborators from across the country in support of the Black Lives Matter, co-written in the aftermath of last week’s fatal shootings of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile, and five Dallas police

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Attempting to Close a “Gene-race-nal” Gap

From the San Francisco Chronicle: June 12, 2016 Letters Home: Asian Americans in Support of Black Lives Matter   “Dear Mom, Dad, Uncle, Auntie, Grandfather, Grandmother: We need to talk. You may not have grown up around people who are black, but I have. Black people are a fundamental part of my life: they are my friends, my classmates and teammates, my roommates, my family. Today, I’m scared for them.”   So begins a powerful letter involving hundreds of Asian American collaborators from across the country in support of the Black Lives Matter, co-written in the aftermath of last week’s fatal shootings of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile, and five

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“From a Docent” Blog: Our Ed Team’s Way of Talking Off Hours

One might think after talking history, social studies, immigration policy and more to and thousands (and thousands) of visitors each year, the Education Team might take a break and do something else with their lives. We do– but we also obsessively help each other out. Our internal blog connects each interpretive guide with resources, ideas, storytelling techniques as a means of peer-to-peer learning. It gives us a chance to continually expand the canvases on which we paint the nuances of history. Lately, it seems the New Yorker has had a lot of relevant articles and essays. By no means is this an endorsement of that publication– but they have been doing their part

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