More than 10 years ago, MediaRites debuted Crossing East, (Our Stories, Our History, Our America), the first and to date only Asian American/Pacific Islander history series on public radio.
In 2016 we embarked on an exciting project to save more than 150 hours of oral history recordings gathered for this groundbreaking Peabody Award-winning radio series hosted by George Takei and Margaret Cho.
We digitized all the interviews, transcripts and photos online for the public to use for educational purposes. This act of preservation is called the Crossing East Archive Project.
MediaRites was awarded funding from the Oregon Arts Commission, the Oregon Cultural Trust, the Regional Arts and Culture Council , the Multnomah County Cultural Coalition and the PGE Foundation and built the multimedia Crossing East archive. We created two projects to celebrate the 10th anniversary year. See the Archive at: http://www.crossingeast.org/crossingeastarchive/
The first was a yearlong series of workshops focusing on African American and Asian American/Pacific Islander (AAPI) historic relationships. Titled “Unpacking the Model Minority Myth,” this series of workshops created by Asian Pacific American Network of Oregon (APANO) will be held in Portland and Corvallis. These workshops address AAPI stereotypes and how this myth is used to create tensions between communities of color. The audio gathered from the workshops will make up a new radio documentary special and a series of short videos to celebrate the 10-year anniversary of the broadcasts of Crossing East in 2016-2017.
The second was the “Refugee Dreams Revisited” project, a youth theatre piece celebrating the stories of Portland Southeast Asian refugee elders who first arrived in the 80s and 90s. In Spring 2017, young Southeast Asian actors will create an original theatre piece for three performances at area libraries and the Immigrant and Refugee Community Organization. Each performance will feature original elders interviewed for Crossing East.
This archive will make all the valuable broadcast-quality recordings available to the public. It will be perhaps the most complete collection of AAPI history interviews from scholars, educators, activists, artists and families from around the country.
Visit the Crossing East Archive Project
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