Asian American Little Magazines 1968-1974: By Amardeep Singh

Roots: An Asian American Reader (1971)

Roots: an Asian American Reader was published by the University of California-Los Angeles Press in 1971; it is described on its title page as "A Project of the UCLA Asian American Studies Center." It may be the first anthology of Asian American writing ever published. As such, it is remarkable for the range of topics and materials covered by authors in the collection -- from the "model minority" myth (which the editors are already challenging), to interracial dating, to media representations of Asians. Though the editors are apparently all of Japanese descent, there is also a notable attempt here to articulate a pan-ethnic, Asian American identity, with inclusion of materials by Chinese Americans, Korean Americans, Filipino Americans, and Native Hawaiians. 

Roots was edited by Amy Tachiki, Eddie Wong, Franklin Odo, and Buck Wong. The introduction is by Amy Tachiki.

The volume contains a mix of academic essays, poetry, interviews conducted by the editors, journalistic accounts of current issues, and personal essays. Many of the texts included in the anthology are reprinted from other journals, including various issues of GidraRodan, Amerasia JournalAsian American Political Alliance Newspaper, Hawaii Free Press, and Kalayaan International.

Finally, the volume contains a list of "Movement Journals," including those listed above as well as Asian Women's Journal (published at UC Berkeley), Aion, Getting Together, and Hawaii Pono Journal. 

Poems in the collection include: 

"Roots" by Ron Tanaka (Gidra 1.8)
"From a Lotus Blossom Cunt" by Tomi Tanaka
"Revolution Point Zero: 1967 (or whatever)" by Mary Uyematsu
"Rapping With One Million Carabaos in the Dark" by Al Robles
"The Trouble With Losing Face is, you become invisible" by Marie Chung
"Stormy Weather" by Shin'ya Ono
"Asian Brother, Asian Sister" by Lawson Inada
"I hate my wife for her flat yellow face" by Ron Tanaka (from Gidra 1.6)

Essays of note include: 

"Response and Change for the Asian in America: A Survey of Asian American Literature" by Bruce Iwasaki
"White Male Qualities" by Anonymous
"The Intolerance of Success" by Daniel Okimoto
"The Emergence of Yellow Power in America" by Amy Uyematsu (from Gidra 1.7)
"Am Curious (Yellow?)" by Violet Rabaya (from Gidra 1.7)
"The Failure of Democracy in a Time of Crisis" by Isao Fujimoto (from Gidra 1.6)
"Autobiography of a Sansei Female" by Anonymous
"A Brief Biographical Sketch of a Newly Found Asian Male" by Ron Low
"New York Chinatown Today: Community in Crisis" by Rocky Chin (from Amerasia Journal 1.1)
"Koreans in America, 1903-1945" by Linda Shin (from Amerasia Journal 1.3)
Book Review of Nisei: The Quiet Americans. by Yuji Ichioka (from Gidra 2.1)
GIs and Asian Women by Evelyn Yoshimura. (from Asian Women [1971])

Full Table of Contents:

Introduction, Amy Tachiki
Success Story of One Minority Group in America, U.S. News and World Report
The Emergence of Yellow Power in America, Amy Uyematsu
The Intolerance of Success, Daniel Okimoto
An Interview with S.I. Hayakawa, Editorial Board
The Nature of G.I. Racism, Norman Nakamura
G.I.’s and Asian Women, Evelyn Yoshimura
That Oriental Feeling, Irvin Paik
 
Selective Acculturation and the Dating Process: the Patterning of Chinese – Caucasian Interracial Dating by Melford Weiss
White Male Qualities
‘I hate my wife for her flat yellow face,’ Ron Tanaka
Generation and Character: the Case of the Japanese Americans, Stanford Lyman
Chinese – American Personality and Mental Health, Stanley Sue and Derald W. Sue
An Interview with Harry Kitano, Editorial Board
Response and Change for the Asian in America: a Survey of Asian American Literature, Bruce Iwasaki
Roots, Ron Tanaka
A Brief Biographical Sketch of a Newly Found Asian Male, Ron Low
From a lotus blossom cunt, Tomi Tanaka
Am Curious (Yellow?), Violet Rabaya
Revolution point zero: 1967 (or whenever), Mary Uyematsu
Autobiography of a Sansei Female
Rapping with One Million Carabaos in the Dark, Al Robles
The trouble with losing face is, you become invisible Marie Chung
Stormy Weather, Shin’ya Ono
Asian Brother, Asian Sister, Lawson Inada
History
 
Introduction, Buck Wong
Causes of Chinese Emigration, Pyau Ling
One Hundred Years of Japanese Labor in the USA, Karl Yoneda
Strangers in the City; the Chinese in the Urban Frontier, Stanford Lyman
Filipino Immigration: the Creation of a New Social Problem, Violet Rabaya
Koreans in America, 1903 – 1945, Linda Shin
The Failure of Democracy in a Time of Crisis, Isao Fujimoto
The Cherishing of Liberty: the American Nisei, Bill Hosokawa
Book Review of Nisei: The Quiet Americans, Yuji Ichioka
The U.S. in Asia and Asians in the U.S., Franklin Odo with Mary Uyematsu, Ken Hanada, Peggy Li, Marie Chung
Community
 
Introduction, Eddie Wong
AAPA Perspectives
Understanding AAPA
An Interview with Pat Sumi, Editorial Board
Concept of Asian American Studies
Need for Awareness: an Essay on Chinatown San Francisco, Buck Wong
Asian Community Center
An Interview with L. Ling-Chi Wang, Editorial Board
New York Chinatown Today: Community in Crisis, Rocky Chin
I Wor Kuen: twelve-point program
Asian Women as Leaders
The Asian American Experience in Sacramento River Delta, Ken Suyama
Sour Grapes: Symbol of Oppression, Phillip Vera Cruz
An Interview with Phillip Vera Cruz, Editorial Board
International Hotel
Filipinos: a Fast Growing U.S. Minority – Philippines Revolution, KALAYAAN Editorial Collective
Save Kalama Valley – Hawaii
This Land is Mine
Raising the Fist
Tourism: Decline of Aloha, Roy Tsumoto
Hawaiian Homestead Struggle, Laura Alancastre and Gloria Burbage
Little Tokyo: Searching the Psat and Analyzing the Future, Jim H. Matsuoka
An Interview with Warren Furutani, Editorial Board
J.U.S.T. Platform
List of Movement Journals

 

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  1. Roots: An Asian American Reader Cover