Asian American Studies Center Events

Upcoming Events
Friday, May 8, 2020 | 5:00pm - 6:00pm

Why we feel this conversation is necessary, and an overview by diverse voices of what's happening across the country — hate crimes, anti-Asian sentiment, communities struck both by COVID-19 and the virus of racism.

With guests David Henry Hwang (acclaimed playwright, M. Butterfly and Soft Power), Viet Thanh Nguyen (Pulitzer Prize winner for The Sympathizer), Jenny Yang (writer and comedian), Cynthia Choi (Chinese for Affirmative Action and Stop Anti-AAPI Hate), Dale Minami (Minami Tamaki LLP and lead counsel for Korematsu v. United States) and Bo Thao-Urabe (Coalition of Asian American Leaders and former Obama appointee to the White House Commission on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders).

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Organized by RISE: Asia Pacific America

Co-sponsored by UCLA Asian American Studies Center and others

Monday, May 11 & Tuesday, May 12: Television Premiere

Additional airing dates and online streaming of episodes can be found on

ASIAN AMERICANS is a five-hour film series that delivers a bold, fresh perspective on a history that matters today, more than ever. As America becomes more diverse—and more divided—while facing unimaginable challenges, how do we move forward together? Told through intimate and personal lives, the series will cast a new lens on U.S. history and the ongoing role that Asian Americans have played in shaping the nation's story. Asian Americans is a production of WETA Washington, DC and the Center for Asian American Media (CAAM) for PBS, in association with the Independent Television Service (ITVS), Flash Cuts, and Tajima-Peña Productions. Professor Renee Tajima-Peña serves as the series producer.

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Friday, May 15, 2020 | 5:00 pm - 6:00 pm

Our history, our roots: literary, sociological and community-based voices on the larger historical context of anti-Asian discrimination. Is what's happening familiar from a big-picture perspective? How has harm against our community manifested in the past? WIth former U.S. Ambassador to China Gary Locke, historian Erika Lee (author, America for Americans), John Jay College of Criminal Justice professor Kevin Nadal, and others.

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Organized by RISE: Asia Pacific America

Co-sponsored by UCLA Asian American Studies Center and others

Friday, May 22, 2020 | 5:00 pm - 6:00 pm

What does relief and recovery look like, both socially and economically? What do our communities and vital institutions need at this time, to come back from its direct impact, to reframe the narrative about who we are as a people, and to ensure resilience in future crises?

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Organized by RISE: Asia Pacific America

Co-sponsored by UCLA Asian American Studies Center and others

Thursday, May 28, 2020 | 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm

A live conversation with author Professor Sean Metzger with Professor Rachel Lee

In The Chinese Atlantic, Sean Metzger charts processes of global circulation across and beyond the Atlantic, exploring how seascapes generate new understandings of Chinese migration, financial networks and artistic production. Moving across film, painting, performance, and installation art, Metzger traces flows of money, culture, and aesthetics to reveal the ways in which routes of commerce stretching back to the Dutch Golden Age have molded and continue to influence the social reproduction of Chineseness. With a particular focus on the Caribbean, Metzger investigates the expressive culture of Chinese migrants and the communities that received these waves of people. He interrogates central issues in the study of similar case studies from South Africa and England to demonstrate how Chinese Atlantic seascapes frame globalization as we experience it today. Frequently focusing on art that interacts directly with the sites in which it is located, Metzger explores how Chinese migrant laborers and entrepreneurs did the same to shape - both physically and culturally - the new spaces in which they found themselves. In this manner, Metzger encourages us to see how artistic imagination and practice interact with migration to produce a new way of framing the global.

Sean Metzger is the Vice Chair, Undergraduate Studies in the Department of Theater. He is a scholar who works at the intersections of several fields: visual culture (art, fashion, film, theater) as well as Asian American, Caribbean, Chinese, film, performance and sexuality studies. His new book is titled: The Chinese Atlantic: Seascapes and the Theatricality of Globalization (Indiana University Press, 2020) the text complicates discourses of globalization and reimagines geographies through an examination of aesthetic objects and practices situated in cities from Shanghai to Cape Town.

Rachel Lee is Director of the Center for the Study of Women and Professor of Gender Studies, English, and the Institute of Society and Genetics at UCLA. She is the author of The Exquisite Corpse of Asian America: Biopolitics, Biosociality, and Posthuman Ecoloiges (NYU, 2014) and editor of a newly published special issue of Catalyst: Feminism, Theory, Technoscience (May 2020) on Chemical Entanglements: Gender and Exposure, the introduction of which highlights the work of Hong Kong and Brooklyn-based glassmaker and artist, Jes Fan:

Sponsored by UCLA Asian American Studies Center, UCLA Department of Theater, UCLA Department of Film, Television, and Digital Media, UCLA Asia Pacific Center, UCLA Center for the Study of Women, UCLA Asian American Studies Department

Register for webinar link:

Friday, May 29, 2020 | 5:00 pm - 6:00 pm

Next steps for the future: How do we build organizational infrastructure across our APA communities and coalition build with others? What do we need to do to strategically plan for a future where we aren't just responding to threats, but leading toward solutions?

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Organized by RISE: Asia Pacific America

Co-sponsored by UCLA Asian American Studies Center and others

Monday, June 1, 2020 | 2:00 pm - 3:00 pm

Join the UCLA Asian American Studies Center and UCLA School of Nursing to talk about stories from the front lines of COVID-19 and standing against COVID-19 & Anti-Asian racism.


Deborah Koniak-Griffin, Associate Dean of Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion, UCLA School of Nursing

Karen Umemoto, Professor & Director UCLA Asian American Studies Center


Emma Cuenca, Assistant Adjunct Professor, UCLA School of Nursing - "Filipino/a/x and Asian Health Care Professionals on the Front Lines"

Shi Zhang, MD, Internal Medicine, Hospitalist, Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center & UCLA Medical Center, Santa Monica - "Risks and Sacrifices of Health Professionals"

Gilbert Gee, Ph.D. , Professor, UCLA Fielding School of Public Health - "Disease and Anti-Asian Racism: How the Past Informs the Present"

Manjusha Kulkarni, JD, Executive Director, Asian Pacific Policy and Planning Council (A3PCON), Co-Founder, STOP AAPI HATE Reporting Center - "What You Can Do to Fight the Hate and Show the Love"

Organized by UCLA School of Nursing & UCLA Asian American Studies Center

Co-Sponsored by: UCLA Public Health, Asian Pacific Policy & Planning Council (A3PCON), UCLA Asia Pacific Center, UCLA International Institute, UCLA Institute of American Cultures, UCLA Alumni - Diversity Programs & Initiatives, Asian Pacific Alumni of UCLA, Pilipino American Alumni, Asian Pacific Coalition, Pacific Ties Newsmagazine, Pilipino American Graduate Student Association


Thursday, June 4, 2020 | 3:30 pm

Presented by UCLA Asian American Studies 176: the Philippines and its Elsewheres

In celebration of Cornell University's Southeast Asian Studies 70th Year and UCLA's new minor in Pilipino Studies, we invite you to join in the live streaming event of the play adaptation of Carlos Bulosan's short story "The Romance of Magno Rubio," produced by New York's Theater Ma-Yi. Streaming will be followed with Q&A and discussion with Dr. Joi Barrios, Filipino Studies lecturer and award-winning writer, UC Berkeley; actors Jojo Gonzalez, and Ron Domingo. This event honors Dr. Dawn Mabalon who continues to inspire us.

Set in Central Valley, California in the 1930s, the play focuses on Magno Rubio, an illiterate Filipino farmworker and his pen-pal courtship with Clarabelle, a white woman from Arkansas who advertises in the back pages of a "lonely hearts" magazine. Believing he's found the woman of his dreams, Magno fantasizes about their life together, only to soon realize that reality and dreams do not always align.

This recording theatrical production of one of Carlos Bulosan's short stories has been made available by Theater Ma-Yi, a three-decades-old award-winning Asian American Theater company.

Organized by Professors Christine Balance (Cornell U) and Lucy Burns (UCLA); Sponsored by Cornell SEA, UCLA Asian American Studies Dept, UCLA Asian American Studies Center, UCLA Center for Southeast Asian Studies, Cornell U Asian American Studies. Co-sponsors Pin@y Educational Partnerships (PEP), Bulosan Center for Filpino Studies, Bridge + Delta Publishing, UCLA's Vietnamese Student Association.

Register for the webinar: