Reader’s Digest: What Is Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month—and How Is It Celebrated?

It's more important than ever to honor the many incredible contributions of the Asian American and Pacific Islander community to U.S. history.

This article was originally published in Reader’s Digest Magazine.

What Is Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month—and How Is It Celebrated?, May 11, 2022


With the rise of anti-Asian hate crimes during the coronavirus pandemic, Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month is an especially important time for both celebration and raising awareness. It’s an opportunity to show love and support across the many cultures within the AAPI community as well as solidarity with non-Asian communities as well—turning grief and injustice into activism and joy. From May 1 to May 31, the nation is reminded that Asian Americans should neither be lumped together into a single East Asian monolith, nor boxed into the stereotype of a model minority to be pitted against other BIPOC communities.

We prove we are worthy of being the main character in mainstream media, including Crazy Rich AsiansMinariEverything Everywhere All at Once, and other AAPI movies; Never Have I EverSquid Games, and other AAPI TV shows; and PachinkoThe Magical Language of Others, and other AAPI books. We also recognize the many contributions of activists Philip Vera Cruz, Grace Boggs Lee, and Yuri Kochiyama, astronaut Kalpana Chawla, writers Cathy Park Hong and Viet Thanh Nguyen, and so many, many more famous Asian Americans.

Even if you’ll be spending May supporting Asian American–owned companies, it’s important to note that being anti-racist is a daily practice, and that we should celebrate diversity all year round. To start, here are some Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month facts you should absolutely know.

Read more here.


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