May is Asian Heritage Month

I bet most of us didn’t know or must have forgotten that this month, it’s all about celebrating our Asian-ness. If my speculation is spot on I wouldn’t even be surprised since the only way I found out was through a little poster stuck on a Toronto Sun vending box at the corner of Victoria Park and Sheppard where I get off to walk to work.

Today I came across a US-based blog Angry Asian Man and saw a video created by the Asia Society which asked stalwart figures in the Asian-American community: “What does being Asian-American mean to you?” Although they did not feature Filipino-Americans in their 5-minute short clip, Asia Society president Vishakha Desai challenges Asian-Americans of all nationalities (including Filipinos) to let the virtual world know their thoughts on their heritage.

For Asian-Canadians, specifically Filipino-Canadians, we want to turn that question back to you – What does being Asian-Canadian mean to you? We would love to hear your opinions in the “comments” section below.

~ by antoniele on May 9, 2008.

5 Responses to “May is Asian Heritage Month”

  1. Asian Canadian Month is always conflicting for me, because it ends up conjuring up the question “What does the Philippines or being Filipino have to do with being Asian?”

    Other than the rice in the bowl and the geographic location… what does kimchi, a laughing buddha or dancing lions have to do with pork adobo, Santo Nino or dancing Ifugao?

    Maybe Asian Heritage Month is a great time for Filipino Canadians to highlight the Philippines unique culture within the bigger Asian umbrella.

    As for being Filipino Canadian means being in limbo, neither here nor there!

  2. I’m sure we all agree that Philippine culture is heavily influenced by other cultures. Outside of obvious heavy western influences from the Spaniards and Americans, I think there are some asian influences. I don’t know these as facts but just my own crazy theory.

    Chinese:
    – food is the most obvious to me. Like pancit,lumpia,mami,bihon,siopao,lugaw & maybe lechon (all from China).
    – language. ate,kuya,bakya,susi,hikaw,hataw (sound Chinese to me)
    – majong (China)
    – karaoke, LOL (Japan)
    – removing shoes,slippers before entering the house (Japan)

    Other than that, I think we’re more polynesians or austronesian. Our language part of the malayo-polynesian subgroup in austronesian languages. I hope I got that right or my sister who’s a linguist will kill me.

    We’re pacific islanders!!! hahaha

    Wow! we are one confused group of people.

  3. hmmm

    ok Jonny! You have some good points and I guess if you know Manila then you’ve been to Binondo, which is pure Chinese.

    I guess we’re the only ones in Asia who are “the product” of other Asian countries.

  4. Yeah I know Binondo. But there are (or were) more Chinese in Cebu where I grew up. The school I went to even had Mandarin as a mandatory subject (but we treated it like you do French here). I had a lot of Chinese classmates (all owners of shipping lines, malls, etc….). I just owned a fishball stand. hahaha

  5. It’s always irked me when people say we’re NOT Asians. I don’t really think not having Buddhism as our roots, like most of our Asian counterparts. Asian means we’re from Asia, much like Indians, Indonesians, Arabs, Koreans, etc. are.

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