Thursday, February 27, 2014

International Night

At last! International Night is here! Don't let that hokey/modest name fool you, we had 400 kids, 25 performances, repping 21 countries and cultures, on and off stage in an hour and a half. Plus special opening remarks from Mr. LaRon Williams, Storyteller Extraordinaire. And help moving our piano from Police Chief John Seto and Principal Morhous. Thanks to all the families and friends who helped make everything happen.

Monday, February 24, 2014

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Upcoming writing classes at Oakland Community College, Southfield Campus

Upcoming writing classes that I am teaching at Oakland Community College, Southfield Campus

Register today! Register early! Tell your friends! https://www.oaklandcc.edu/CE/PDFS/WritingClasses.pdf

Jumpstart your Memoir
Saturday, March 8, 2014, 9:00 am - 3:00 pm
Oakland Community College

Finding your Voice
Saturday, March 22, 2014, 9:00 am - 3:00 pm
Oakland Community College

Write your way through Reinvention
Saturday, May 17, 2014, 9:00 am - 3:00 pm
Oakland Community College

Ethical Wills
Saturday, May 31, 2014, 9:00 am - 3:00 pm
Oakland Community College

Jumpstart your Blog
Saturday, June 7, 2014, 9:00 - 3:00 pm
Oakland Community College

Friday, February 21, 2014

"Where the Lava Meets the Sea" Hula Performance and Prose Poetry Reading Today


"Where the Lava Meets the Sea" Hula Performance and Prose Poetry Reading
Friday, February 21st 7 - 8:30 pm
38 Lake St. Oak Park, IL 60302

Join the dancers of Halau i Ka Pono as they do classical hula and chants of Pele - The Volcano/Fire Goddess, intertwined with the prose/poetry of Michigan and Hawaii based writer, Frances Kai-Hwa Wang. This collaboration between masterful storyteller Wang and Halau i Ka Pono will bring you straight to the heart of the natural wonders and Hawaiian culture that captivate and move us all.

http://myemail.constantcontact.com/When-the-Lava-Meets-the-Sea.html?soid=1103899376875&aid=a_Y0SByA9N8

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Speaking at West Bloomfield Rotary Club

Speaking at West Bloomfield Rotary Club this morning and reading from "Where the Lava Meets the Sea." Thanks Geebee for the introduction!

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Day of Remembrance: Korematsu Case and the Future

February 19 is the Day of Remembrance.


My article from Michigan's 2014 Korematsu Program:

Some people think that the incarceration of Japanese Americans in concentration camps during World War II happened a long long time ago, and since the verdict in the Korematsu case was vacated, everything is okay now, and this could never happen again. However, after the events of 9/11, there has been an escalation of hate crimes and racial profiling all around the country targeting Muslims and Arab Americans, and those perceived to be Muslim and Arab Americans (like Sikh Americans). In fact, the first person killed in a hate crime after 9/11 was a Sikh American originally from India named Balbir Singh Sodi. There were also many people at the time proposing that we round up all Muslim and Arab Americans into concentration camps just like World War II. Luckily, many Japanese Americans stood up for the Muslim and Arab American communities and said, “Never again.” So it is important to continue to examine the Korematsu case as we look to the future, our future.
Chicago is the World » The Korematsu Case and the Future, Our Future

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Paisley Rekdal Poetry Reading Thursday, February 20, 5:10 pm, UMMA

Paisley Rekdal
Poetry Reading
Thursday, February 20, 5:10 pm
UMMA Helmut Stern Auditorium


Paisley Rekdal is the author of a book of essays, The Night My Mother Met Bruce Lee; the 

hybrid genre, photo-text memoir Intimate; and four books of poetry: A Crash of Rhinos, Six 

Girls Without Pants, The Invention of the Kaleidoscope, and Animal Eye.  Her work has received 

the Amy Lowell Poetry Traveling Fellowship, a Village Voice Writers on the Verge Award, 

an NEA Fellowship, two Pushcart Prizes, the University of Georgia Press’ Contemporary 

Poetry Series Award, a Fulbright Fellowship, inclusion in the Best American Poetry series (2102 

and 2013) and various state arts council awards.  Her most recent book of poems, Animal 

Eye, was a finalist for the 2013 Kingsley Tufts Prize, the Balcones Poetry Prize, and was 

the winner of the 2013 UNT Rilke Prize. Her poems and essays have appeared in or are 

forthcoming from The New York Times Magazine, American Poetry Review, The Kenyon Review, 

Poetry, The New Republic, Virginia Quarterly Review, Tin House, and on National Public Radio 

among many others.

Check this out: http://www.poetryfoundation.org/poem/245908

Monday, February 17, 2014

Dare to Dream and Writing with Style writing workshops at WCC

There is still room in these two writing workshops I'm teaching this week and next week at Washtenaw Community College: Dare to Dream (The Midlife Crisis Writing Workshop) and Writing with Style (Finding your Voice Writing Workshop). Register today!

English Special Workshop- Dare to Dream  ENG 4055  Start 02/18/14  Mandatory Fees: $0.00  Rm. LA 160
2 sessions  Tue Thu  Tuition: $49.00  Location: Liberal Arts & Sciences Bldg   Instructor: Wang  
Writing With Style  ENG 4004  Start 02/24/14  Mandatory Fees: $0.00  Rm. LA 272
2 sessions  Mon Wed  Tuition: $49.00  Location: Liberal Arts & Sciences Bldg   Instructor: Wang  

2012 - 2013 Kartika Review Anthology

So pleased to be a part of the 2012 - 2013 Kartika Review Anthology featuring the works of Adalena Kavanagh, Aditya Desai, An Tran, Anu Kandikuppa, April Naoko Heck, Aruni Kashyap, Bridget Crenshaw Mabunga, Chris Santiago, Danny Robles, David Mura, Frances Kai-Hwa Wang, Fredrick D. Kakinami Cloyd, Hai-Dang Phan, Henry W. Leung, Ira Sukrungruang, Jackson Bliss, Jen Palmares Meadows, Jenna Kilic, Jimin Han, Kaitlin Solimine, Kali Fajardo-Anstine, Karen An-hwei Lee, Khaty Xiong, Kiki Whang, Lee Herrick, Mai Nardone, Mia Ayumi Malhotra, Michelle Chan Brown, Minh Pham, Naomi J. Williams, Neil Aitken, Purvi Shah, R.A. Santos, R.A. Villanueva, Rachelle Cruz, Ramola D., Sean Labrador y Manzano, Sharon Hashimoto, Shubha Venugopal, Simi Kang, Sonia Hathi, Susan Ito, Tony D’Souza, V. Jo Hsu, W. Todd Kaneko, and Wah-Ming Chang

Available now on lulu! Thanks to editor Jennifer Derilo

New Link Here:  http://bit.ly/1oDDY2c

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Best Critiques of Tiger Mother Amy Chua and Jed Rubenfeld’s The Triple Package

Articles to note refuting the latest from Amy Chua Tiger Mother, The Triple Package:

This article is everything I wanted to say, but better, and with academic research and resources to back it up (so I didn't have to go look it all up) and by another law professor. Ha!
"The Flaw at the Heart of The Triple Package--Why Amy Chua and Jed Rubenfeld’s argument about success and ethnic groups doesn’t hold water." in Slate
By Daria Roithmayr (another law professor! Daria Roithmayr is the George T. and Harriet E. Pfleger Professor of Law at USC, and the author of Reproducing Racism: How Everyday Choices Lock In White Advantage.)
Amy Chua and Jed Rubenfeld’s The Triple Package, reviewed.
The Triple Package’s minimizing of history is a bit curious, given that many of the authors’ own sources favor this explanation. Here are some of the early-wave stories that the authors could have told but didn’t:
  • It’s not just that Mormons have developed a “pioneer spirit” or that they believe that they can receive divine revelations, as Triple Package would have us believe. It’s more that the first Mormons started with enough money to buy a great deal of land in Missouri and Illinois. They then migrated to Utah, where Brigham Young and his followers essentially stole land from the Shoshone and Ute tribes,refusing to pay what the tribes demanded, and petitioning for the government to remove them. Beyond thousands of acres of free land, early political control over Utah was helpful.
  • The very first wave of Cubans—exclusively white and wealthy or upper middle-class—came in anticipation of Castro’s revolution. This pre-revolutionary wave didn’t suffer “the humiliating sting of becoming menial workers,” as Chua and Rubenfeld suggest; they came bringing their art collections, financial investments, and elite connections with them. For later first-wavers, a $957 million dollar U.S. government refugee program (loans for small businesses, for example) didn’t hurt, though the authors fail to mention this.
  • Why do south Asian Indians earn higher wages? As Triple Packageacknowledges, immigration law has done a great deal of prescreening for a very select cross section of south Asian Indians. A majority of them come on employment-based visas, with higher educations and English skills, to work in high-tech jobs in California, New York, and Chicago. The Indian median incomes come from this group and not the poorer subsequent waves that theTriple Package profiles.
  • Likewise, it’s not that Nigerians “feel they are capable of anything.” More to the point, the vast majority of Nigerians in the U.S. do well in higher education because they are non-immigrants who have come on foreign student visasexpressly to enroll in U.S. schools. Nigerians get advanced degrees in no small part because they need to stay in school to retain their visa.

Again, more facts and figures at the ready to back up what we all already knew were illusions.
The dangerous myth of “The Triple Package”: What Amy Chua gets wrong about Asian-American communities - Salon.com --By claiming some groups are naturally predisposed to succeed, Chua ignores the inequalities within them
By the amazing KHIN MAI AUNG (Khin Mai Aung is Director of the Educational Equity Program at the Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund.)
“The Triple Package” boldly takes research findings out of context. In one circumstance, Chua and Rubenfeld rely on the work of researcher Vivian Louie to support their proposition that Chinese immigrants – including those who are low income – possess impulse control, one of the three triple package traits allowing them to succeed and transcend social class to attain upward mobility. However, a more careful read of Louie’s work indicates that while her working-class, immigrant Chinese subjects would indeed agree that hard work and educational excellence are keys to success, class barriers and lack of social capital in reality can block or impede their actual social advancement. Ultimately, Louie concludes that we need more research “disentangl[ing] immigrant status, race and ethnicity, and socioeconomic status” in understanding social mobility.

Why Amy Chua’s book on the exceptional gets civil rights all wrong
BY MARY C. CURTIS, Washington Post
In their book, their assessment of the historic civil rights movement that freed all Americans to be their best selves and challenged America to live up to its founding principles and realize its promise is willfully, dumbfoundedly clueless. Who could view the photos and newsreels of brave men, women and children, and conclude that the movement took away hope for a “superiority narrative” by striving for equality under the law? Apparently Chua and Rubenfeld. “In this paradoxical sense, equality isn’t fair to African-Americans,” they write.

Amy Chua’s 'Triple Package' is Tiger Mother Meets Horatio Alger, With a Side of Grit | BlogHer
By my friend, blogger Hapa Mama Grace Hwang Lynch, who introduces the new term to the world, "The Chubenfelds"
The Chubenfelds (because, c’mon, that’s how we all think of them, right?) bring up such troublesome facts occasionally – but then plow ahead with their theme of individual grit, a word they bandy about so often, I half expected to see them in cowboy hats on the book cover. Hard work, perseverance, and personal responsibility are important to advancement, sure but they’re also racial tropes commonly used to deflect discussion of discrimination and structural inequality. Nothing here is really new. It feels like a re-hash of Horatio Alger’s rags to riches stories, the Model Minority myth, with hint of The Bell Curve.

Jeff Yang's Wall Street Journal article is somewhere, I don't know why I can't find the link right now.


Tiger Mom vs. Brooklyn Dragon: I Hereby Challenge Amy Chua to a Barefist Kung Fu Duel | Jie-Song Zhang
And of course we can't forget the very cool Jie-Song Zhang's great challenge to "the most Chinese Mahjong Fukien showdown. Ever." Yo.
Tell me how you want it, Chua. We could match fists across the rooftops of a small rural village, the shadow outlines of our battle poses stitched across the cold black fabric of night. We could flying swordfight ballet upon the tops of tallest trees, barefoot or wearing Li-Ning sneakers. We could get down in Chinatown at the corner of Mott and Bayard, with a gathered crowd of elderly Chinese men, all of them squatting and smoking cigarettes as they watch us. Whatever you want to do. We could trade stances and glances in an ancient temple, awash in a thousand beads of candlelight, encircled by bare-headed monks thumbing their beads and chanting. We could shadow-box in the middle of the Stuyversant High School cafeteria, amid a room full of Chinese kids taking the SATs and scoring perfect on the Math sections. We could get real, real Chinese with it.

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Chicago Reading, Writing Workshop, and Hula!



Hey Chicago! Next Friday and Saturday! "Where the Lava Meets the Sea" Hula Performance and Prose Poetry Reading, Friday, February 21 7-8:30 pm AND The Ha (Breath) of Writing Workshop, Saturday, February 22, 9am -4:30 pm with Hula Chicago: Halau I Ka Pono with Kumu June Tanoue

Still Time to Register! http://conta.cc/1gCsYxY


Friday, February 14, 2014

Thirteen Angry Years Angry Asian Man

Happy Angryversary Angry Asian Man Phil Yu! i remember when we at IMDiversity.com Asian American Village were just quoting you as some dude. And now you're THE dude.  

Thirteen Angry Years

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

RSVP: Media Roundtable: US Citizenship - The Next Step in Immigrant Rights?

I'll be reading "Dreams of the Diaspora" at this New America Media event February 19:

Media Roundtable: US Citizenship - The Next Step in Immigrant Rights?

How many Detroit area immigrants are eligible to apply for US citizenship — and what would happen if they did? What do immigrant families need to know about upcoming changes to the US citizenship application in 2014? What are the major hurdles that prevent immigrants from becoming citizens, and what can ethnic media do to address them?

Please join New America Media in Detroit for a roundtable discussion with Detroit ethnic media, immigrant advocacy organizations and recently naturalized citizens on the role of ethnic media in the new citizenship campaign of 2014.

WHEN:
Wednesday, Feb. 19
11:00 am - 1:30 pm
(Lunch provided)

WHERE:
Antonio’s Cucina Italiana
37646 W. 12 Mile Rd
Farmington Hills, MI 48331

Hosted by: New America Media, in collaboration with National Immigration Forum and the New Americans Campaign
RSVP: Media Roundtable: US Citizenship - The Next Step in Immigrant Rights?

Monday, February 10, 2014

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Lion Dancing today at Whole Foods for Chinese Lunar New Year's


From Whole Foods' Facebook page:

Join Whole Foods Market Cranbrook and the Ann Arbor Chinese Center of Michigan to celebrate the Chinese New Year on Sunday, February 9, 2-3pm. Students from the Center will perform a lion's (sic) dance, traditional Chinese music, Chinese yo-yo and a ribbon dance. Customers will have an opportunity to try their hand at Chinese calligraphy, traditional paper cutting, and other learning materials.

https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10152208152534429&set=a.105383434428.88281.105043659428&type=1&theater

Photograph from 2013 performance.

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Ann Arbor Chinese Lunar New Year's Celebration Today


MC'ing today at the Ann Arbor Chinese Center of Michigan's annual Chinese New Year's Celebration! Performances start at 3:00 pm, Dinner starts at 6:00 pm. You don't want to miss our amazing Lion Dance at 3:00 sharp! From aaccom.org:


Chinese New Year Party 馬年新年晚會
  • 02/08/14 AACCOM Chinese New Year Party 年新年晚會 
    • Date 日期February 8, 2014, Saturday / 2013年二月八日星期六
    • Location 地點:
      • Morris Lawrence Building: Towsley Auditorium, 
      • Washtenaw Community College
      • 4800 E. Huron River Drive, Ann Arbor
    • Dinner Ticket 晚餐門票
      • pre-sale ticket 預售成人 Adult $10, 孩童 Child (age 5-14) $8
      • at-door 現場成人 Adult $12, 孩童 Child (age 5-14) $10
    • Raffle Ticket 摸彩券
      • pre-sale ticket 預售25 cents each
      • at-door 現場50 cents each
      • Each student will get 4 free raffle tickets
    • Program 流程
      • 12 pm – 1:30 pm Setup/Decoration
      • 1 pm – 3 pm Rehearsal 預演
      • 1:15 pm – 2:45 pm Games 遊戲
      • 3 pm – 6 pm Performances 節目表演
      • 6 pm – 9 pm Dinner 晚餐
      • 7:00 pm – 8:30 pm Games 遊戲
More at http://annarborobserver.com/search_results/923341391795785.html

2013 Photo courtesy of Photasa Photography.

Friday, February 7, 2014

Chicago is the World » The Korematsu Case and the Future, Our Future

My article from Michigan's 2014 Korematsu Program:
Some people think that the incarceration of Japanese Americans in concentration camps during World War II happened a long long time ago, and since the verdict in the Korematsu case was vacated, everything is okay now, and this could never happen again. However, after the events of 9/11, there has been an escalation of hate crimes and racial profiling all around the country targeting Muslims and Arab Americans, and those perceived to be Muslim and Arab Americans (like Sikh Americans). In fact, the first person killed in a hate crime after 9/11 was a Sikh American originally from India named Balbir Singh Sodi. There were also many people at the time proposing that we round up all Muslim and Arab Americans into concentration camps just like World War II. Luckily, many Japanese Americans stood up for the Muslim and Arab American communities and said, “Never again.” So it is important to continue to examine the Korematsu case as we look to the future, our future.
Chicago is the World » The Korematsu Case and the Future, Our Future

Register today for Chicago Reading and Writing Workshop February 21-22

Chicago Friends! Join me and kumu hula June Tanoue for a poetry reading and hula performance Friday February 21 7pm and a day-long writing and hula workshop on Saturday, February 22, 9-4:30, at Hula Chicago: Halau I Ka Pono with Kumu June Tanoue (and please send your friends!) (20% off with Early Registration today!)

http://archive.constantcontact.com/fs107/1103899376875/archive/1116347092314.html

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Civil Rights Icon Fred Korematsu Honored by State of Michigan at Huron High School Ceremony |

From AAPS News (but not from who you think):
“It is important for us, as young people, to look out for each other and to stand up for our friends and neighbors,” Wang said. “We should fight against all forms of ignorance and bigotry.”
Civil Rights Icon Fred Korematsu Honored by State of Michigan at Huron High School Ceremony |

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

The Ark - George Kahumoku Jr. & Ledward Kaapana

George Kahumoku Jr. & Ledward Kaapana at The Ark in Ann Arbor on Tuesday, February 4!

From The Ark:
Legenday wizards of the slack key guitar
Tonight's show offers a rare Midwestern appearance by two of the masters of the Hawaiian slack key guitar, playing the music that Hawaiians play among themselves. They'll perform together, and a pair of Hula dancers will be in attendance. George Kahumoku Jr. has been called Hawaii's Renaissance Man. A multiple Grammy and Hoku award winner, he offers an annual slack key guitar and ukulele workshop that is one of the great musical learning experiences in the Islands today, and the result of George's belief in sharing, celebrating, and perpetuating the unique music and culture that is Hawaii. George appears with Led Kaapana, who has been called the Grand Master of Hawaiian Slack Key. Led's mastery of stringed instruments and his extraordinary baritone and leo ki`eki`e (falsetto) voices have made him a musical legend. He has been thrilling audiences for more than 40 years. With an easygoing style and kolohe (rascal) charm, he has built a loyal corps of Led Heads from Europe to his birthplace on the Big Island of Hawaii. Like so many Hawaiians, Led grew up in a musical family. In the tiny black sand bay village of Kalapana, there were few distractions. "We didn't have electricity, no television, not even much radio," says Led. "So we entertained ourselves. You could go to any house and everybody was playing music." It was at these family gatherings that Led learned to play in the old style, watching, listening, then imitating. Chief among his teachers were his mother, Mama Tina Kaapana, and his uncle Fred Punahoa. "Even today when I play, I still picture all the `ohana (family) getting together and sharing their songs and their aloha." This is a chance to hear Hawaiian music as it grew organically, below the mainland's commercial radar, and it's a real tonic for a Michigan winter.


The Ark - George Kahumoku Jr. & Ledward Kaapana

Sunday, February 2, 2014

"Grandfather Walking," Kartika Review, found again

So excited to find my creative nonfiction piece, "Grandfather Walking," again after Kartika Review had some hacker problems a few months back. (Why would anyone target a literary journal?) Check it out on page 109. With a photograph by Jyoti Omi Chowdhury at the beginning and something special at the end. Click here: ISSUU - kartika_issue16 by Kartika Review



ISSUU - kartika_issue16 by Kartika Review

And here is the link to purchase a hard copy: Kartika Review: Issue 16, Fall 2013. by Christine Lee Zilka (Paperback) - Lulu

In China, ‘Once the Villages Are Gone, the Culture Is Gone’ - NYTimes.com

Fascinating food for thought about traditional arts and modernity:

In China, ‘Once the Villages Are Gone, the Culture Is Gone’ - NYTimes.com

Saturday, February 1, 2014

CAPAC and JANM Commemorate Fred Korematsu Day

Great quotes from our elected officials about the importance of remembering Fred Korematsu and commemorating Korematsu Day.
CAPAC Commemorates Fred Korematsu Day | Congresswoman Colleen Hanabusa

Some great ideas from Japanese American National Museum on ways teachers can commemorate Fred Korematsu's stand for civil liberties!
Fred #KorematsuDay 2014 | FIRST & CENTRAL

and I simply love this photograph from San Jose. from korematsuinstitute.org.
Photo: at the corner of Korematsu Court and Hirabayashi Drive. Next time you're in San Jose! http://korematsuinstitute.org/institute/aboutfred/korematsus-growing-legacy/ h/t Fred T. Korematsu Institute for Civil Rights and Education
There was an error in this gadget