We’ll be in conversation with author Thi Bui about her debut graphic novel, “The Best We Could Do,” which offers a haunting and intimate portrayal of one family’s journey from war torn Vietnam. Then, we’ll hear from the lead petitioner seeking justice for the Shibayama brothers, who continue to demand that the US government be accountable for its ongoing failure to provide redress for war crimes perpetrated against them as children during World War II. We will round out the hour in conversation with contributors of the newly released South Asian American Issue released by the Chicago Quarterly, guest edited by Moazzam Sheikh, who explains that “The new South Asian American writer is a wild beast.” We’ll delve into that wildness. We have all that and more, so tune it.
On our new year spotlight, we look internationally at India and China exploring human rights issues and the complexity of micro finance.
Preeti Shekar talks with feminist author and academic Kalpana Karunakaran about her book: Women, Microfinance and the State in Neoliberal India. We examine how the politics of neoliberal economics impact women’s rights and organizing in India. They discuss how the Indian state, under the guise of fighting poverty and promoting women’s rights, manipulatively promotes micro finance among rural and poor women. We find that the reality on the ground is much more complex.
Chinese human rights activist Ye Haiyan, known as Hooligan Sparrow
Melissa Hung talks with filmmaker Nanfu Wong about Hooligan Sparrow, one of 15 films on the 2017 Oscar shortlist for best documentary. Wong follows Chinese human rights activist Ye Haiyan, known as Hooligan Sparrow, as she seeks justice for six girls who were raped. She organizes a protest but is arrested the next day. Upon release, Ye is harassed and tracked by the government. Wong herself becomes a target of intimidation tactics. She smuggled footage out of China in order to make this film. The film opens January 6 at the 4 Star Theater in San Francisco and screens January 9 at 7 p.m. at the the Roxie Theater.
Tune in tonight for our monthly South Asian edition of APEX Express. First we bring you a critical discussion with Dalit artivist Thenmozhi Soundararajan from the South Asian Histories for All coalition, on the ongoing California Textbook Campaign; on the struggle to keep ancient Indian history curricula in middle school history textbooks, as- it-happened, and not how a well-funded group of Hindu fundamentalists would like it to be. Then we discuss with Lisa Sangoi, a lawyer with National Advocates for Pregnant Women, Purvi Patel’s case, where we find out the status quo of a young Indian American woman who was unjustly thrown in jail for 20 years, for having a late term abortion. Produced by: Preeti Mangala Shekar and Justine Lee
On the 125th anniversary of #Ambedkar‘s birth anniversary and in celebration of #DalitHistoryMonth, hear from inspiring activists Benjamin P Kaila and Sumit Baudh. Find out about how Dalit activists have been mobilizing in the bay area and beyond, and the incomparable legend, leader and visionary that #Ambedkar was!
Tonight’s edition we revisit the R.J. Lozada’s trip to the Philippines and bring you an interview with Brandon Lee, a human rights worker who moved from the United States to the Philippines to be with his family and serve the people. Lee is currently being threatened by authorities in the Philippines, and we’ll talk to some of his friends and fellow organizers about how people can help protect Brandon and other activists.
We bring you thoughts from the vigil for slain Bangladeshi blogger Avijit Roy.
To conclude, we’ll bring you a lively discussion by Preeti Shekar Mangala with noted journalist and author Sandip Roy on his debut novel that has already been making waves, Don’t Let Him Know.
Listen to an expanded cut of Sandip Roy’s Interview:
Krisantha Sri Bhaggiyadatta
Reading and Reception
Visiting Sri Lankan Canadian poet from Toronto makes a rare U.S. West Coast appearance
Thursday April 2, 6:30-8:30PM at Kearney Street Workshop (ARC Studios and Gallery – 1246 Folsom St., San Francisco)
Free & open to the public
Suggested $5 donation (all proceeds go to the artist)
Light snacks provided
Co-sponsored by Kearny Street Workshop
KRISANTHA SRI BHAGGIYADATTA plays on the links between history, Sri Lanka and the Americas, Africa and Asia. He was a broadcaster of the radio show Bourgeois Blues, Bourgeois News on Toronto’s CKLN (now banned). He is presently compiling: A Very Personal English History of the World. His books of poetry include: Transfixed in Twilight (2015), Cheqpoint in Heaven (2005), Aay Wha’ Kinda Indian Arr U? (1997, 2015), The 52nd State of Amnesia (1992), The Only Minority is the Bourgeoisie (1985), and Domestic Bliss (1981). He has read poetry in Colombo, Kandy, Beijing, Port of Spain, New York, San Francisco, London, and Toronto.
On Memory and Place: Writing Workshop with Manilatown’s Tony Robles
April 4, 11, 17 & May 2, 1-3 PM at I-Hotel Manilatown Center (868 Kearny St., San Francisco)
Join Kearny Street Workshop for a 4-part writing workshop exploring the sacred places where our poetical sense of community blossoms and grows. Guided by Tony Robles, participants will write about their sense of home, sense of self, and sense of place. We will draw inspiration from the works of Asian Pacific American literary elders such as Jeff Tagami, Shirley Ancheta, Al Robles, and others who explore the heart of Manilatown, the heart in exile, and what it means to come home.
This week on Apex Express we feature interviews and analysis of two cases you probably have not heard much about.
First we bring you in-depth coverage of Jo Nan Hui – woman fighting deportation, and the right to keep her child, after fleeing her abusive partner. We examine how her particular case sheds light on a broken immigration system, which often makes it difficult for victims of domestic abuse to seek help, and we look at how Korean and Women’s Rights advocates are fighting her case.
And, we talk toRaj Hameed and Anirvan Chatterjee, from the local South Asian Community about their response and organizing, in the aftermath of Avijit Roy’s murder in Bangladesh. Avijit Roy was an outspoken secularist blogger who was killed this week by a fundamentalist group. His murder sparked protests across Bangladesh, and has galvanized Bangladeshi-Americans to look to Congress, in the US, to help hold the government, and his killers, accountable.
That tonight at 7 pm, on 94.1, KPFA .
Hosted by Marie Choi and Salima Hamirani
March 5, join us at Oakland Through Our Lens Featuring photographs of life in Oakland taken by women, the show will focus on women of color, queer women, and first time photographers. The exhibit will be at both Betti Ono Gallery and Show and Tell Concept Shop.
March 5th, at the International Hotel in San Francisco. There is a hip hop benefit for BlackOUT Collective & TGIJP (Transgender, Gender Variant & Intersex Justice Project). All ages, 6:30 to 11pm.
Saturday March 7th, from 9 am to 7 pm, is the Empowering Women of Color Conference. No better time than now: Transnational resistance, solidarity and love. in Wheeler Hall, at UC Berkeley.
Also Saturday March 7th from 3 to 5 pm, at the Asian Resource gallery, is your last time to see Rebel Legacy, which connects the century-long history of South Asian American activism with contemporary social movements, linking local and global struggles for equity and social justice.
Image from the shut down of the Oakland Police Department on Monday.
Yuri Kochiyama print by Melanie Cervantes with Dignidad Rebelde
As we kick-start the new year, we bring you the best of 2014 that the APEX Express crew covered in 2014. From the fierce movements challenging autocratic state and police power in Ferguson and across the U. S. through #Asians4BlackLives and other phenomenal grassroots groups; to demanding real democracies in Hong Kong and India; to celebrating the lives of revolutionaries like Fred Ho and Yuri Kochiyama, it’s been a year of celebrating and covering the power of movement building. South Asian American activist Nadia Khastagir joins us to highlight the context and importance of South Asian solidarity with #BlackLivesMatter