AAPI News & Stories

AAPI News & Stories from across Southeast Michigan

Three years after the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, the United States continues battling other social pandemics including a rise in hate crimes against Asian Americans. From March 2020 to March 2022, the nonprofit organization Stop AAPI Hate reported nearly 11,500 hate incidents directed at Asian Americans across the country. 

One Detroit began covering the responses and stories of Asian American and Pacific Islander communities in Southeast Michigan in 2021 through a joint storytelling project, the AAPI Story Series, with WDET. As part of our commitment to engaging with and sharing the stories of Detroit’s AAPI communities, One Detroit continues its AAPI Story Series as well as covering the latest news topics that impact and affect AAPI communities in our region. 

From in-depth context on the legacy of Vincent Chin to highlighting the everyday experiences and creativity of Metro Detroit’s Asian Americans in the present, explore One Detroit’s diverse coverage of Southeast Michigan’s AAPI communities. 

The AAPI Storytelling Initiative:

Jack Cheng and Paul Pham

At the intersection of their Asian heritage and American upbringing, Jack Cheng and Paul Pham unpack what home really means

For Jack Cheng and Paul Pham, becoming friends could not have come at a better time. Meeting at a mutual friend’s house in Detroit led to a friendship rooted in introspection about their similar experiences — experiences they hadn’t talked about with anybody else before. Jack and Paul talk about the common threads that brought them together.

Two women create lasting bond through AAPI Advocacy, APA Studies course at MSU

Friends Brenda Hu and Meaghan Kozar talk about a pivotal introductory APA studies class at Michigan State University, how representation for Asian Americans has changed, and what keeps them inspired when it comes to advocacy in their everyday lives for One Detroit’s AAPI Stories series.

David Han and Mike Han

Father-son connect through AAPI activism, art and their experiences as Korean Americans

David and Mike Han weren’t always on the same page. The father-son duo had diverged some since Mike’s youth, as Mike shied away from his Korean heritage, but through the years, they’ve learned to listen to each other and understand who they are as individuals.

Lily and Jim

AAPI Story Series | Couple Finds Love Through Communication, Education and Cultural Differences

Within 24 hours of meeting at a conference, Lily Mendoza and Jim Perkinson knew they had found their life partner. Since getting married in 2004, they have built a rich and full life together as activists and educators who challenge their students to think more deeply about race relations and to share their personal stories while navigating the complexities of their relationship

AAPI Story Series | 30-Year Friendship Deepens After the Death of George Floyd

For One Detroit and WDET’s AAPI Story Series, Taiwanese and Chinese American Chien-An Yuan and his friend John Eaton share their reactions to the George Floyd murder and reflect on their shared and divergent experiences growing up in their homogenous Ohio suburb. Plus, the two discuss how their friendship has grown deeper over the last three decades.

AAPI Story Series | Filipino Adoptee’s Search for His Birth Mother Took Him Across the World, Inspired Local Advocacy

Dan, an adoptee from the Philippines, grew up in the Romeo area in a loving family with a close-knit group of friends, but something always felt off for him. With Joe’s love and support, Dan kept looking for his biological family even when the search seemed futile.

AAPI News Coverage:

Detroit's Chinatowns exhibit at the Detroit Historical Museum

Preserving Detroit’s vanished Chinatowns: A journey through 150 years of Chinese American history

The Detroit Historical Museum unveils a new exhibit, “Detroit’s Chinatowns,” which explores the 150-year journey of the city’s Chinese community. The exhibit chronicles the immigrant experience from Ah-Chee’s arrival in 1872 to the vibrant businesses and communal life that characterized the 1970s and 80s. Contributor Chien-An Yuan has the story.

Dominic Pangborn at his final exhibit "Uncrated"

Korean American artist Dominic Pangborn digs out forgotten, unseen works for final exhibit ‘Uncrated’

Korean American artist Dominic Pangborn has unveiled his final exhibit “Uncrated: A Final Retrospective” at the Ella Sharp Museum in Jackson, Michigan. The exhibit showcases some of Pangborn’s forgotten and unseen works, offering patrons a glimpse into the artist’s four-decade career. One Detroit’s Bill Kubota has the story.

Curtis Chin in front of his family's former restaurant, Chung's Cantonese Cuisine

Curtis Chin’s new memoir chronicles life lessons learned in a Chinese restaurant

In the heart of Detroit’s bygone Chinatown, a vibrant oasis once thrived and diverse patrons, from celebrities to everyday families, shared more than just meals at Chung’s restaurant. Curtis Chin, a Detroit native, author and activist, takes readers on an evocative journey through his upbringing in Detroit’s former Chinatown in his book, “Everything I Learned, I Learned in a Chinese Restaurant.”

Madame Butterfly opera

Asian Americans in the arts: A conversation of representation, progress around Detroit Opera’s ‘Madame Butterfly’

One Detroit’s Bill Kubota explores the historical representations in “Madame Butterfly” and how Detroit Opera’s new rendition addresses these cultural concerns with members of Detroit’s Asian American and Pacific Islander community.

All-Japanese, Japanese American creative team re-imagines ‘Madame Butterfly’ for Detroit Opera 

We’re taking viewers behind the scenes of Detroit Opera’s re-envisioned production of “Madame Butterfly.” Led by an all-Japanese and Japanese American creative team, the production introduces a more culturally resonant portrayal of the iconic opera.

Mike Han: United by Design exhibit

Detroit artist Mike Han debuts his first solo exhibit during 13th annual Detroit Month of Design

Detroit-based designer and artist Mike Han presents his debut solo exhibition during Design Core Detroit’s 13th annual Detroit Month of Design. Han’s inaugural solo exhibit, titled “Mike Han: United by Design,” takes people on a captivating exploration of his creative practice, which is infused with Korean techniques, graffiti inspiration, and modern design elements. The exhibit runs through Sept. 30 at Playground Detroit.

Upcoming AAPI Community Events & Programs

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