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Celebrating AAPI Heritage Month at Northeastern University: Honoring Our Faculty and Their Work 

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May is Asian Pacific Islander Desi American (APIDA) Heritage Month (also known as Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month), a time to recognize and celebrate the contributions of AAPI communities. At Northeastern University’s College of Social Sciences and Humanities (CSSH), our faculty and their scholarly work play a vital role in enriching our understanding of global cultures and histories. Here we highlight some of the impactful projects and events spearheaded by our esteemed faculty members during the past academic year.

Remember! Asian Americans and the Archive

In November 2023, CSSH hosted “Remember! Asian Americans and the Archive.” This event explored the crucial role of archives in preserving the histories and narratives of Asian American communities. By examining historical documents, personal stories, and cultural artifacts, this initiative aimed to shed light on the often overlooked contributions of Asian Americans in shaping our society. The event drew on the work, research, and lived experiences of many of our faculty, including Associate Professor of History and Asian Studies and Director of Global Asian Studies Philip Thai; Associate Professor of Asian American and Visual Studies Denise Khor; Assistant Professor of Cultural Anthropology and Global Asian Studies Sasha Sabherwal; Acting Director of the Asia and the World Program and Associate Professor of Anthropology Doreen Lee; Associate Professor of English Eunsong Kim; and Assistant Professor of Political Science and Cultures, Societies and Global Studies Chinbo Chong.

In collaboration with the Reckonings Project, Professor Denise Khor’s course “Asian American Cinemas” developed a timeline of the Asian American Resource Workshop (AARW). AARW is a political community highlighting Pan-Asian political, social, and economic issues within the diaspora of Greater Boston, and offers grassroots resources through political education, creative expression, and issue-based and neighborhood organizing. This timeline shows different archival materials from the Pan-Asian association and focuses on creating “a future that honors all Asian Pacific Islander communities” through “political education, creative expression, and issue-based and neighborhood organizing.”

You can find the full AARW Throughout the Years Project here. 

Learn more about Remember! Asian Americans and the Archive

(left to right) Hardeep Dhillon, Doreen Lee, Iyko Day, Simeon Man, and Christine Balance at Remember! Asian Americans and the Archive
Student, staff, and faculty participants of Remember! Asian Americans and the Archive

The Oath of the Sword: Film Screening and Panel Discussion 

In September 2023, Northeastern University, in collaboration with the Boston Asian American Film Festival, screened The Oath of the Sword, the earliest known Asian American film. This screening was followed by a panel discussion of scholars and filmmakers (including award winning filmmaker Arthur Dong) exploring the film’s historical significance and its impact on Asian American representation in cinema. A Northeastern student orchestra led by Professor Allen Feinstein provided live musical accompaniment. Professor Khor was instrumental in recovering the film, and brought it not only to NU, but also to the Academy Museum for its initial world premiere.

More about The Oath of the Sword Screening.

(left to right) Susan Chinsen, Allen Feinstein, Denise Khor, and Arthur Dong at The Oath of the Sword: Film Screening and Panel Discussion this past September.

Artist Talk with Heesoo Kwon 

Renowned artist Heesoo Kwon spoke at Northeastern in November 2023 on their work exploring themes of feminine identity, memory, and the intersections of culture and personal history. The event was a thought-provoking exploration of contemporary Asian diasporic art and its resonances.

Details on Heesoo Kwon’s Artist Talk 

“Rethinking Korea” Speakers Series 

Northeastern’s Global Asian Studies Program inaugurated its “Rethinking Korea” Speakers Series. The series features interdisciplinary experts and diplomats who offer unique perspectives on Korea’s history, culture, and global influence. The initiative, supported by the South Korean Initiative Fund, underscores Northeastern’s commitment to expanding our Korean Studies programming through events, scholarships, and new courses.

Explore the Rethinking Korea Speakers Series 

Korean Studies Student Award Winners 

The Global Asian Studies Program recently announced the winners of the Korean Studies Student Award for 2024. This new award supports students pursuing studies or research related to Korea, empowering the community and fostering academic excellence in Korean Studies. It is also the first time Northeastern is offering financial support for students to immerse themselves into one of the most dynamic and important countries in the world, supplementing aid to programs such as study abroad, research, internships, and co-op opportunities in South Korea. Winners include students on dialogues such as “Entrepreneurship and Global Consulting in Korea” and studying at Yonsei University or Korea University.

Meet the Korean Studies Student Award Winners 

South Korean Initiative Fund: A New Chapter in Korean Studies 

The Min Family, whose child is a current Northeastern student, provided a generous gift to establish the South Korean Initiative Fund. This fund will significantly enhance Korean Studies at CSSH by supporting a two-year speaker series, faculty engagement, and financial aid for students studying or working in South Korea. Additionally, the fund has allowed for the hiring of a full-time Korean language instructor, with courses beginning this fall.

China Studies: Honoring Student Achievements 

The Hong Liu China Studies Student Award, made possible by a generous donation from NU alumnae Hong Liu, supports students engaging in China-related studies. This award is part of Northeastern’s broader commitment to fostering academic exploration and cross-cultural understanding between China and the United States.

Learn about the Hong Liu China Studies Student Award. 

Join Us in Celebrating AAPI Heritage Month 

We invite you to celebrate AAPI Heritage Month by exploring these enriching events and honoring the outstanding contributions of our AAPI faculty and students. For more information on AAPI Heritage Month events and resources at Northeastern, visit:

CSSH and Northeastern is proud to honor the rich heritage and invaluable contributions of the APIDA community!

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