1) How and why have millions of people moved from Asia to the United States since the 1960s? 2) What events and issues have rallied Asian Americans of diverse backgrounds together over the past...

1) How and why have millions of people moved from Asia to the United States since the 1960s?

2) What events and issues have rallied Asian Americans of diverse backgrounds together over the past four decades? What have been the strengths and/or limitations of organizing politically as "Asian Americans"? Why?

3) How and why has anti-Asian racism changed and/or not changed since the beginning of World War II 

Asked on by praysurf99

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pohnpei397's profile pic

pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted on

Asian immigration to the United States has occurred largely for the same reasons that immigration from other areas has.  Asians have come to the US because they have wanted to escape bad conditions in their own countries and because they have been attracted by better conditions in the US.  With regard to Asians in particular, immigration has increased since the 1960s because a law passed in 1965 removed the legal barriers to Asian immigration that had previously existed.  Once these barriers were removed, more Asians came.  Vietnamese fled the conflict in that country.  Koreans and Filipinos came for economic opportunities.  These are typical reasons for immigrants to come to the US.

There have not been many events or issues that have rallied all Asian Americans over the past four decades.  This is largely because of the limitations of trying to rally all Asian Americans as a single political group.  It is almost impossible to rally all Asian Americans because they are such a diverse group with so little in common.  Asians do not all speak the same language (or even languages that are closely related to one another).  Asians are not all of the same religion as there are (for example) Buddhists from Korea,  Hindus from India, and Catholics from the Philippines.  Asians do not look the same, as there are clear differences between (to give three examples) “Orientals” like Japanese and Chinese, Filipinos, and Indians.  Because Asian Americans are so different, there is little that can make them all feel that they have much in common.  You can argue that there was some movement towards pan-Asian feeling during the 1970s because other ethnic groups were pushing for rights.  You can argue that there was some rallying during the time when Americans were being very anti-Japanese for economic reasons in the 1970s and 1980s.  However, these events and issues have not really rallied all Asian Americans.

Anti-Asian racism has changed drastically since the start of WWII.  In those days, anti-Asian racism centered on hatred of Japan and the Japanese because of their role in the war.  Today, there are various types of racism that different types of Asians encounter.  There is the resentment felt towards Orientals because of the rise of China and because those Asians have been so successful in academics.  There is more traditional racism directed towards people like Filipinos and Bangladeshis because of their skin color and general foreignness.  The major overall change is that there are different kinds of racism that are felt by different kinds of Asians.

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praysurf99 | Student, Grade 10 | (Level 1) eNoter

Posted on

For number 2.. What about the third world liberation front? There are plenty of examples in history where Asian Americans of different backgrounds have rallied together for the same cause 

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