May 1, 2023
South Asians are the fastest growing major group in the U.S. today. In honor of Asian Pacific American Heritage Month, the below 15 stories not only explore the past but also history as we make it — from the rise of the Indian-origin CEO to how we depict South Asians in Hollywood to the unsolved mystery of heart disease in South Asians and how Yale was built on stolen riches from India. These stories are just a window into the multifaceted experiences of being an American with roots in India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Bhutan, Maldives, Afghanistan, and more.
Asian Pacific American Heritage Month goes back to May 1979, when President Jimmy Carter signed the first Asian Pacific American Heritage Week into effect. Congress permanently extended the celebrations from a week to a month in 1992. May is significant because Japanese immigrants first arrived in the U.S. in May 1843 and Chinese immigrants helped build America’s first transcontinental railroad, completed in May 1869. This year, in proclaiming May 2023 as Asian American and Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander Heritage Month, the White House spoke about the presence of Asians and Pacific Islanders at all levels of U.S. government and building a National Museum of Asian Pacific American History and Culture.
The Juggernaut is dedicated to telling untold and overlooked histories, especially in the diaspora. We hope you enjoy the below stories, which only scratch the surface of our rich archive.