MAASU Newsletter - Page 8

#WHEREareyoufrom The new MAASU iniative with an introduction by Jonathon Sun, our Advocacy Co-Chair. This year, MAASU is starting a new initiative in order to help other students understand what Asian American culture in the Midwest looks like. Asian American culture is everywhere while at the same time nowhere. As the Midwest Asian American Students Union, we believe that we should try to have a better understanding of what Midwest Asian American culture looks like. While pondering the thought of better understanding Asian American Culture some may be lead to ask, “Is it even necessary to pigeon hole the concept of Asian American culture?” It may be such a broad idea that even the idea of trying to construct a box around it, may prove to be impossible, however that doesn’t mean we should not try. Thus MAASU would like to proudly present the first season of our thought exercise into Asian American Culture, #whereareyoufrom? Often times Asian Americans are asked, “Where are you from?” in the hopes of eliciting the “Correct response” as saying, “I am from such and such Asian country.” However, many Asian Americans are from the United States. This kind of question can be defined as a micro aggression, a seemingly harmless statement that in actuality has a lot of offense to it. What makes this kind of question offensive is the fact that it challenges ones identity as an American. Thus the first season of MAASU’s exploration into Asian American culture is to explore where people really are from and their experiences that they have. This project is intended to not only capture the experiences of people living and growing up in the Midwest, but to capture their family histories and struggles as well. As noted this is the first season of this exploration. Each year, MAASU will continue to look into different aspects of In addition to sharing stories, we would also like to present different education material that goes with the stories. Each of these stories, underscores a different theme starting with the model minority myth, after this each of the stories we present will present a new word and material with it. The first story we have in this series is founder of the Midwest Asian American Students Union Charles Chang. He recounts his story of being the tough guy and being a role model to his family. His story is read by Jonathon Sun. Asian American culture through the form of commonly asked questions, such as “What are you?” or “Eww what’s that smell?” Each of these questions will lead to a larger overarching dialogue on what makes Asian Americans, Asian Americans. We hope to challenge other students to engage with each other and learn more about each other and their pasts and their stories. Storytelling is one of the most powerful tools we have to learn about each and about ourselves. It makes us recount our experiences and really think about how we felt, how it impacts us now, and legitimize our experiences. We have utilized the Storycorp app, in order to compile all our stories, so there is one location to access the stories. In addition to accessing these stories, we challenge you to gather your own stories with your friends and families about where they are from and their experiences growing up in the Midwest. #whereareyoufrom Often times, Asian Americans are asked, “Where are you from?” in the hopes of elciting the “Correct response” as saying, “I am from such and such Asian country.” However, many Asian Americans are born and raised elsewhere, beyon where their ancestors come from. MAASU would like to explore the Asian American culture with YOU, to capture the experiences of people growing up in the Midwest and their family’s histories and struggles to survive. Please click the hashtag below to learn more and get involved! #WhereAreYouFrom