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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Faculty Editors' Note


When Richie, Austin, Anh-Tu, and Gabby first approached us about their interest in initiating an undergraduate e-journal with a focus on Asian American issues, we were thrilled to learn of their vision for the project and offered our unqualified support. A student-led initiative, the multi-disciplinary Asian American Research Journal (AARJ) with a focus on Asian American experience is the first of its kind at UC Berkeley! Over the course of 15-plus months of incubation, the team worked with us to think through the structure of the editorial board, the disciplinary parameters of the journal, the copyright issues of publishing, and the editorial process. From the outset, the team worked fastidiously and methodically, ensuring the timely publication of their first issue at the end of the academic year 2020-2021. They did all this remotely, amid the shelter-in-place orders and on top of their own academic and extra-curricular responsibilities. Their herculean efforts to make this collective vision come true is nothing short of awe-inspiring!

The inaugural issue of  the Asian American Research Journal (AARJ) is an excellent collection of timely articles that reflect the diversity of interests and issues facing Asian Americans today. The essays encompass a broad range of topics, including health and mental wellness, Asian North American representations, policies and legislations, education, involuntary migration and refugeeism, sexuality, and the reintegration of the formerly incarcerated. Together, the essays showcase the vibrant, dynamic, and socially engaged research taken up by our talented and committed students. Their keen analysis of some of the most pressing issues of our time amplifies the work of the Asian American and Asian Diaspora Studies Program. They also affirm the importance of cultivating and nurturing young critics and scholars, who will carry forward this intellectual project and advance social change.

With great pride and enthusiasm, we welcome this inaugural issue of the AARJ! We are so proud of the team and so grateful for all the thought, time, effort, and care that the members put in to launch UC Berkeley’s first Asian American Research Journal. They and their work represent all the very best that the Asian American and Asian Diaspora Studies Program stands for. We thank them for their inspiration, vision, and hard work, and for carrying our message forward and outward!

Professor Lok Siu                         Professor  Khatharya Um

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