Journal of Educational Controversy


Tuesday, September 7, 2021

Message from Editorial Board Member on New Book about South Asian Americans

 JEC editorial board member, Paul Englesberg, has announced a new book that we think our readers will find helpful in expanding the cultural understanding of their high school and college students on South Asian Americans.   Paul points out that the book covers both individual stories and a wide range of topics that includes civil rights, immigration, religion, identity, labor, family, and popular culture.  He writes that it is quite up-to-date and also includes a brief inset about Pramila Jayapal.   Here is Paul’s description of the book that he hopes will “ensure a future where young South Asian Americans see themselves reflected in the American story.”

Book Announcement

I am writing to you about something very important to me personally. I am helping to share the word about Our Stories: An Introduction to South Asian America, a new book for high school and college-aged readers. South Asian Americans have been a presence in the United States for more than 130 years, and the community today includes more than 5.4 million individuals. Yet South Asian American stories are still not taught in classrooms, found in textbooks, or reflected in popular media. I am joining SAADA in working to change that, and today I am asking you for your help. Please get a copy of Our Stories for yourself, share with your loved ones, and purchase a copy for your local schools and libraries.

With stories spanning from the 1780s to the present day and bringing together the voices of sixty-four authors, this book demonstrates the diversity, vibrancy, and power of the South Asian American community. Our Stories is a nearly 500-page testament to our community's belonging.

I contributed a short chapter about the Bellingham riot of 1907 with some individuals highlighted.  As part of my contribution we included the story of Nabhi Ram Joshi, who studied at the State Normal School, (Western Washington University’s predecessor) and A.K. Mozumdar, the first international student at the Normal School and one of the first South Asians to gain US citizenship, only to have it revoked following the 1923 Thind Supreme Court decision.

            --Paul Englesberg 

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