AAPI Heritage Month 2023

AAPI Heritage Month 2023

Throughout May, Burroughs students and faculty members are celebrating Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month with a community-wide Asian Culture Club Dinner, as well as special performances and presentations in morning assembly.

  • Anya Liu '24 spoke about Asian representation in movies, sharing some of her favorite movies starring or directed by Asians, including: Everything, Everywhere, All At Once (2022), Chungking Express (1994), and My Neighbor Totoro (1988).
  • Miko Kim '25 shared some of her favorite Japanese films and shows, including Spirited AwayDemon Slayer, and Alice in Borderland. She encouraged students to reach out to her if they'd like additional recommendations.
  • Anya Liu '24, Earth Gira '24, Sahana Madala '24, and Aarnavi Paduru '24 shared some of their favorite Asian musicians, including Teresa Teng, keshi, dhruv, and various artists represented by 88rising, a musical platform and record label primarily for Asian American and Asian artists.
  • Mischa Ahmad '25 spoke the umbrella term "Asian" and highlighted some of the South Asian, Central Asian, and Middle Eastern countries that are sometimes overlooked when people refer to Asia as a monolith.
  • Aliyah Elbeck '28, Christian Chang '28, Avary Choe '28, and Amara Mahoney '28 spoke about the Korean Wave and its influence on Asian representation in mainstream media. They shared some of their favorite K-pop groups and K-dramas (including Business ProposalCrash Landing on YouHospital Playlist, and Hometown Cha-Cha-Cha).
  • Samanyu Koduri ’24 spoke about his Indian-American identity, the challenges of bridging two different cultures, and how his experiences with affinity groups and student groups at Burroughs have helped him become more confident in his identity. He encouraged fellow students to find (or create) spaces where they can find and explore their identity.
  • Anokhi Desai '25 performed Bharatanatyam, an ancient classical dance that originated in the southernmost region of India, characterized by rhythmic footwork and hand movements. Dance is a common expression of culture, and many cultures have different styles of dance that are unique to that specific culture. Anokhi's dance celebrated the Indian god Ganesha, the remover of obstacles and bringer of good luck. You can watch her performance below.
  • Olivia Lu '26 shared some of her favorite Korean foods, including hotteok (a filled pancake), gyeranjjim (steamed eggs), japchae (glass noodles), kimbap (seaweed rice rolls), and tteokbokki (spicy rice cakes).
  • Seventh graders Christian Chang '28, Avary Choe '28, Daniel Kim '28, Ethan Sonn '28, and Averill Yi '28 provided a brief overview of relations between North and South Korea since World War II and highlighted the work of Yeonmi Park, a North Korean defector and prominent human rights activist. They shared two book recommendations — Park's In Order to Live and Still Life With Rice by Helie Lee — for anyone interested learning more about life inside North Korea.
  • Carrie Dodson-Ching (History) spoke about Japanese internment during World War II, sharing the story of a beloved family member, Nobuko Kodama, who was forced into an Idaho internment camp as a teenager. She spoke also about the 442nd Regimental Combat Team, a unit composed almost entirely of second-generation American soldiers of Japanese ancestry who fought in World War II, and civil rights activists such as Fred Korematsu, whose resistance efforts in the 1940s set the foundation for justice and recompensation of Japanese Americans in the 1980s.

    "Thousands of other survivors rebuilt lives of dignity and purpose in the wake of this gross injustice by their own country," Ms. Dodson-Ching said. "So today, as we think about coming toward the end of AAPI Month, we can honor their memory and honor them by keeping their stories alive, and by, in the words of Korematsu, guarding against prejudice and keeping our commitment to law and justice."
  • Students modeled traditional clothing from several Asian nations, including a Japanese yukata, a Korean hanbok, Thai sarongs, Indian lehenga and kurta, and Chinese qipao.
  •  JBS alum Julia Riew '17 returned to campus to speak about her meteoric rise in the world of musical theatre. A Korean American, Julia is best known for her viral TikTok musical Dive (previously Shimcheong: A Folktale), which has drawn huge international support online and in the news for asking the question, "What would a Korean Disney princess look like?"

Students interested in presenting should contact Mr. Chen (English) at achen@jburroughs.org

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