Introduction of G-gragon

G-DRAGON-2015_21

When talking about K-pop, you must think of Bigbang. It’s not that universe Big Bang, and it is not the “Big Bang Theory.” It is one of the most famous K-pop bands in Korea. Or, I would like to say, it is the best one. GD stands for G-gragon, is the most famous one in the Bigbang. He is the Korean rapper, songwriter, producer and fashion icon. Imagine Justin Timberlake’s boy bander-turned-credible musician pedigree and Kanye West’s genre-bending artistic daredevilry, and you’ll get an idea of G-Dragon’s standing in K-pop — though his reach is expanding rapidly beyond Asia.

In the American music circle, many musicians mentioned that they would like to play music with GD. On his 2013 album, Coup d’Etat, G-Dragon included the song “Niliria,” which was inspired by a traditional Korean folk song with a similar name. Although he originally didn’t intend to bring on another voice for the track, he began to like the idea, as reported by Kpopstarz. The Big Bang leader explained how he chose Missy Elliott to work with him because he was looking for a female artist who wasn’t popular today, but “more of the past” to fit the antique feel of a folk song. (And of course, it also had to do with the fact that he is a fan of hers.) They mostly collaborated via phone and email, but performed together at the annual Korean culture and music convention, KCON, in 2013 in Los Angeles.

http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/k-pop-star-g-dragon-673649

https://musicalstew.wordpress.com/tag/g-dragon/https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=Niliria

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Academy Award for Best Animated Film goes to…

kimi-no-na-wa

Now anime and the Academy awards have not been the best of friends in the past few years. A notable entry was when Big Hero 6 won best animated picture the same year as the Tale of Princess Kaguya in 2014. Even though both films were amazing Kaguya just had something so amazing about the art sytle and change of pace from the other films on the list up for the award that many people were upset with the outcome. This has not dampened the enthusiasm and optimism of the anime community in this years academy awards. Just the other night Your Name played in a theater in LA giving it eligibility for this years academy awards. People are especially hyped for this come from no where victory as it snagged the LA films critics award for best animated film this year and has topped the box offices in both China and Japan.

So at this point you have either googled or are wondering what Your Name is about. I have not seen the film yet due to wanting to see it in the best resolution possible but have seen the reviews by other fans. The film centers around a girl who dreams of living life as a city boy. One day she wakes up in her dream. She is a boy in the city and a boy is in her body. The story centers around them finding each other. They say that this film is a “masterpiece” and that it’s story ” conceptually very simple, but a lot of depth is added as the story goes on.” If these say anything and the screen shots I have seen have anything to say about this film it is a beautiful piece of art and should be held to the highest quality.

Still not impressed, this anime has the highest score for any anime ever on MAL(myanimelist.net) the go to place and forum for all anime fans. They are very strict on this site and rate many good shows very low. However, this film knocked Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood out of the number one spot which it has held since 2010 by 0.12 in a 10 point scale. That is an impressive feat as before this 90% if anime fans would agree that FMA Brotherhood is the pinnacle of anime perfection. Before this the only other anime film to win an Academy Award was Spirited Away and it is currently ranked number sixteen on MAL. So let’s hope with this year that an anime film gets the respect it deserves.

Below are links to where I got the information and quotes from people.

https://myanimelist.net/anime/32281/Kimi_no_Na_wa 

https://myanimelist.net/topanime.php

http://www.awn.com/news/makoto-shinkai-s-your-name-wins-2016-best-animated-film-award-los-angeles-film-critics

http://en.rocketnews24.com/2016/10/27/anime-hit-your-name-to-get-academy-award-qualifying-u-s-theatrical-run-this-year/ 

 

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Beau Sia, “Asian Invasion”

This is a Def Poetry piece from the mid-2000’s performed by Beau Sia.

Beau performs Asian Invasion in a bright pink, fuzzy turtleneck sweater. He doesn’t address this directly, but the audience can assume the clash between his cutesy clothing and the intense, sustained anger of his piece is intentional; the piece centers entirely on repudiation of and backlash against Asian-American stereotypes.

In particular, Beau focuses on the view of Asians as non-threatening- economically, sexually, and in education. His assertion that Asians “get play all over the ethnic spectrum” challenges the tendency towards a racial and gendered understanding of Asian sexuality. Mentioning per-capita income and “getting into your schools for free,” Beau draws attention to the socioeconomic capital Asian-Americans possess. At the same time, his performance calls on Asian-Americans to “Riiiiiise up!”, or take advantage of that capital to fight for justice and respect.

Though Sia admits his message is “just very very angry,” this in itself challenges narratives painting Asian Americans as quiet, studious, and loath to speak up or out about injustice. The entire piece attacks the general perception of Asians as a “model minority,” and in my opinion delivers nicely.

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Not Everyone Wants to be Jeremy Lin

Article:

http://www.nytimes.com/2016/10/26/sports/basketball/jeremy-lin-nba-brooklyn-nets.html?rref=collection%2Ftimestopic%2FAsian-Americans&action=click&contentCollection=timestopics&region=stream&module=stream_unit&version=latest&contentPlacement=2&pgtype=collection&_r=0


Blog Post:

Not everyone likes to be mistaken for a star athlete, especially when it is meant in a racist manner. I stumbled across this article when researching for my final presentation and was very intrigued by this perspective presented by the author, Andrew Keh. He talks about the professional basketball super star, Jeremy Lin and his impact on racism towards Asian Americans in multiple ways. Ever since the rise of the Lin in the global spotlight, any Asian American playing basketball is referenced as “Jeremy Lin-like”. For some people, this may seem like it is a compliment but if you think about it, the basketball player may not have any similarities to Jeremy Lin in their playing style besides being Asian American. How would I feel like if someone grouped me with Steve Nash, a future Hall of Famer with white skin – The answer is pissed. I dont have any traits that relate to Steve Nash besides my skin color and that is frustrating because I want to be seen for my my Dwight Howard rebounding ability or my Steph Curry free throw accuracy; both athletes being African American but still more realistic to compare me to than a skin color. This article does a fantastic job at highlighting key terms in our AAA 201 course such as perpetual foreigner and panethnicity. This article presents valid points and has truly made me think much more about this argument.

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Taiko – Japanese Drumming

Taiko is a traditional Japanese drum that is used in formal ceremonies and used to be used as a battlefield instrument; but the modern use of it, especially in America, started around the late 1960’s. Seiichi Tanaka was instrumental in the development of Taiko drumming in America. He initially came over to start his martial arts career, but found himself missing the sound of the Japanese drums he was used to hearing back home. His longing for familiar drumming resulted in the creation of one of the first American Taiko groups composed of mostly Japanese Americans.

Tanaka’s martial arts background heavily influenced his philosophy in developing this Taiko group. The drummers have graceful and disciplines movements which requires intense physical and mental training. Tanaka stressed a loose intensity when teaching Taiko and would tell his drummers to “feel the energy come from mother earth, from the bottom of your feet”.

A Taiko ensemble is composed of mostly large and small drums and is sometimes accompanied by gongs and bamboo flutes, each playing a unique role. The small and large drums maintain the pulse while gongs add musical depth, bamboos add melody on occasion, and other drums solo. In these solos, the drummers engage in a dance while they improvise a response to the rhythms of the ensemble.

After the post WWII modernization, aspects of many cultures had forgotten. As a result, many young people started actively rediscovering these forgotten cultural practices. This is
along the time that the rise of Taiko drumming came to be. The Japanese American youth
started taking up Taiko drumming to counter the prominent stereotype of the “quiet Blog Picture
Japanese” as these drums are very loud.

Today, there are more than one hundred Taiko groups in America and even Michelle Obama is joining in on the fun!

 

 

 

References: Fromartz, Samuel. “Anything But Quiet.” Natural History 1 Mar. 1998: n. pag. Anything But Quiet. Web. <http://www.fromartz.com/Pages/taiko1.html>.

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Jackie Chan Gets an Oscar

Jackie Chan is a Hong Kong martial artist, director, and actor known primarily in the United States for his stunts in movies such as the Rush Hour Series, The Karate Kid, and Shanghai Noon. He received this honorary award for after 56 years in the film industry.

“As you know, the Governors Awards are a chance for the Academy to recognize unique achievements across an artist’s whole body of work, because Jackie Chan … has worked mostly in martial arts films and action comedies, two genres that have been, for some reason, shall we say, historically underrepresented at the Oscars, a fact that will change if I have any pull on the Board of Governors,” Hanks, 60, said during the introduction speech.

This means a lot for not just Jackie Chan, but also for martial arts movies and Asian American culture as a whole. For so long, Jackie Chan has been a symbol of what can be achieved by an Asian American in the film industry, rather than just Americans. He now has an award to show for all of the work he has put in, and how he has shared many different cultures with America, the world, and the film industry.

During the award speech, Chan gave mention to his hometown, neighborhood, and country. “I want to thank you, Hong Kong, such an incredible city, my hometown, my hood, who make me,” Chan continued. “China, my country, I am proud to be Chinese. Thank you, Hollywood, for all of those years teaching me so many things, and also [for making] me a little bit famous. I’m just honored to be here.”

http://www.usmagazine.com/celebrity-news/news/jackie-chan-wins-honorary-oscar-after-56-years-200-films-w450257

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The real secret to Asian American success was not education

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/wonk/wp/2016/11/19/the-real-secret-to-asian-american-success-was-not-education/?utm_term=.dd6bbbd3c63e

It is a well known story that Asian Americans have an image of being studious and intelligent. Asian Americans are seen as the model minority because they have a higher income average than other minority groups and their conservative family ideals align with that of white households. However, the author of this article alleges that being studious and holding education to a higher standard is not what elevated Asian Americans as a group. A man named Nathaniel Higler, a Brown University economist, says it is simply due to the fact that society has become less racist towards Asians. Asian immigrants who were the first to immigrate to the US received much resentment and gradually post-WWII it was found that the denial of opportunities were more damaging than having no education.

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Trademarks, Offensive Names, and Asian-Americans

Fact: The Slants, an Asian-American “dance-rock” band, are currently engaged in a legal battle to trademark their band’s name, a legal battle 3 years in the making. In 2011, cited by the authorities in charge of trademarks as being offensive, their request to trademark the band name was rejected twice, and thus the legal battle ensued. Last year, an appellate court ruled in favor of the band stating that the trademark office’s rejection of a trademark for being offensive is a violation of the right to free speech. Obama’s administration is behind pushing this to the SCOTUS in a bid to overturn the ruling and the precedent it could set. The precedent would very likely lead to the allowing of the Washington Redskins football team to trademark their name as well.

Opinion: I’m divided on this. I’m personally against any violations to free speech, but free speech applies to individuals, and a band, while small, is technically a business. In the same sense that the Redskins have been denied the ability to trademark their team’s name, The Slants fit into that same condition. However, I’m not sure why you’re not allowed to trademark something if it’s offensive in the first place. Even if it is to deter that speech, allowing them to trademark that speech would be better for that, since then only that group could use it, officially.

The appellate court also said, however, that The Slants can trademark their name because they use it as a counter to offensive speech by “re-appropriating” the word. Under that precedent, the Redskins likely don’t fit that conditionality. So, honestly, I’m not 100% sure how I feel on this issue, and I’d need to do more research, but it definitely has far reaching implications for free speech in general, so it’s certainly something to keep an eye on.

The Slants' band members are all of Asian descent.

The Slants’ band members are all of Asian descent.

Source

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New Challenge to Asian American

http://nextshark.com/kymby-cao-donald-trump-supporters-harrassment/

Summary

This new is about an Asian woman who suffers from the racialism. When she was walking her dachshund, she was abused by some white men who support Trump by saying “go back to where I came from and to take my CHINK dogs with me” and also got eggs thrown on her hair. It is ridiculous that his girl was born and grew up in American and her dog is a breed from Germany.

Opinion

There are many articles about the violence on Asian American after Trump won the president vote. Since he said something about supporting the white in the underclass, the racialists and exclusivists in white use his words as their protective talisman when they discriminate people with other skin colors.  Asian people were called “Chink” and asked to go back where they from. Some of these Asian people are the citizen of the United States. They born here, grew up here, and may even do not know about China. The behavior of those racialists and exclusivist reminds me the word “perpetual foreigners”, which happened in many decades ago. If the government still do not take any action, I do think it is a regress instead of progress. If a country is not welcome or friendly to the people from different race, it is actually not only challenge for Asian American and international workers, but also for the whole country, especially under the environment of the globalization. 

 

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Asian-Americans and the Ivies: an Uphill Battle

Nearly every high school student dreams of attending a top college, or more specifically an Ivy League school. To do so requires near perfect grades, a stellar ACT score, a rigorous schedule filled with advanced placement courses, and extracurriculars on top of that. However, recently it seems there is an additional criterion that has to be met in order to attend one of the country’s top colleges: you can’t be Asian.

Business Insider recently posted an article describing the experience of high school student Michael Wang. Wang dreamed of attending an Ivy growing up, and worked hard to ensure that he did. With a perfect ACT score, 13 advanced placement courses, a 4.67 GPA, and extracurriculars that included choir, piano, speech, and debate it seemed that Wang would be guaranteed acceptance to one of America’s top colleges.

Instead, Wang was rejected from Stanford and every Ivy League school except University of Pennsylvania. After his rejections Wang filed an official complaint with U.S. Department of Education, alleging that his race worked against him during the admission process. Wang now has the backing of nearly 60 Asian groups that feel that Asian applicants face a severe disadvantage during the admission process, and that Ivy leagues and other colleges use “racial quotas to admit students to the detriment of more qualified Asian-American applicants.”

Race should play no part in the college application process. Institutions of higher learning should look to attain the best students possible, disregarding the race or ethnicity of their candidates, or more Asian-American students will find themselves in the same situation as Wang.

http://www.businessinsider.com/michael-wang-says-ivy-league-discriminates-against-asians-2015-5

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