In the United States, the month of May marks Asian Pacific American Heritage Month, celebrated in May to commemorate the arrival of the first Japanese immigrants to the United States on May 7, 1843, and to mark the anniversary of the transcontinental railroad completion on May 10, 1869. Below, we’ve highlighted some of our recent Asian American Studies titles that explore dynamics of culture and race—from little-known histories of indigenous labor and immigration to explorations of present-day communities. Save 40% on these titles—including pre-orders—with discount code 18W1300.* Browse more new and notable Asian American Studies titles here.

Beyond Hawai’i: Native Labor in the Pacific World
By Gregory Rosenthal

Beyond Hawai‘i gracefully illuminates the aspirations and struggles of Hawaiian chiefs and laborers, and those of an entire Islander civilization navigating a global capitalist system.”—Matt K. Matsuda, author of Pacific Worlds: A History of Seas, Peoples, and Cultures

Beyond Hawai‘i tells the stories of the Kanaka Maoli (Native Hawaiian) men who left Hawai‘i to work on ships at sea and in na ‘aina ‘e (foreign lands), and how their labor shaped the Pacific World, the global economy, and the environment. Bridging American, Chinese, and Pacific historiographies, Beyond Hawai‘i is the first book to argue that indigenous labor—more than the movement of ships and spread of diseases—unified the Pacific World.


Soldiering through Empire: Race and the Making of the Decolonizing Pacific
By Simeon Man

“This is a mind-blowing, landmark book. Simeon Man brilliantly shows how the freedom and dreams of the formerly colonized, the laboring classes, and the racially marginalized across the Asia Pacific and in the United States came to be mobilized toward the making of the U.S. empire and its perpetual state of war.”—Takashi Fujitani, author of Race for Empire: Koreans as Japanese and Japanese as Americans during World War II

Simeon Man uncovers the little-known histories of Filipinos, South Koreans, and Asian Americans who fought in Vietnam, revealing how U.S. empire was sustained through overlapping projects of colonialism and race making.


The Life of Paper: Letters and a Poetics of Living Beyond Captivity
By Sharon Luk

“This is a rigorous, beautifully written, and important work that significantly shifts our current understandings of the epistolary, ‘prison writing,’ and the reproduction of social life within spaces of racialized confinement and incarceration.”—Jodi Kim, author of Ends of Empire: Asian American Critique and the Cold War

Exploring the evolution of racism and confinement in California history, this ambitious investigation disrupts common understandings of the early detention of Chinese migrants, the internment of Japanese Americans, and the mass incarceration of African Americans in its meditation on modern development and imprisonment as a way of life and correspondence as a poetic act of reinvention.


Flavors of Empire: Food and the Making of Thai America
By Mark Padoongpatt

Flavors of Empire makes significant, original, and generative contributions to civic life by revealing the degree to which the U.S. racial order has been shaped by the direct and collateral consequences of U.S. warfare in Asia.”—George Lipsitz, author of How Racism Takes Place

Full of vivid oral histories and new archival material, Flavors of Empire  explores the factors that made foodways central to the Thai American experience. Starting with American Cold War intervention in Thailand, Mark Padoongpatt traces how informal empire allowed U.S. citizens to discover Thai cuisine abroad and introduce it inside the United States. He opens up the history and politics of Thai food for the first time, all while demonstrating how race emerges in seemingly mundane and unexpected places.

Trespassers?: Asian Americans and the Battle for Suburbia
By Willow Lung-Amam

“A timely primer for scholars and students as well as practitioners concerned with race and metropolitan development. Summing Up: Highly recommended.”—CHOICE

Trespassers? takes an intimate look at the everyday life and politics inside Silicon Valley against a backdrop of dramatic demographic shifts. Following one community over several decades as it transforms from a sleepy rural town to a global gateway and one of the nation’s largest Asian American–majority cities, it highlights the passionate efforts of Asian Americans to make Silicon Valley their home. With vivid storytelling, Trespassers? uncovers suburbia as an increasingly important place for immigrants and minorities to register their claims for equality and inclusion.


American History Unbound: Asians and Pacific Islanders
By Gary Y. Okihiro

American History Unbound offers extremely important approaches to rethinking the history of the United States, and takes its place in the recent trend of a globally aligned (US) historiography that questions the construct of, and attempts to break the concept of the ‘American Nation.”—Robert Kramm-Masaoka, H-Net Reviews

A survey of U.S. history from its beginnings to the present, American History Unbound reveals our past through the lens of Asian American and Pacific Islander history. In so doing, it is a work of both history and anti-history, a narrative that fundamentally transforms and deepens our understanding of the United States, world history, and oceanic worlds.


Braided Waters: Environment and Society in Molokai, Hawaii
By Wade Graham

Forthcoming December 2018; pre-order today

Braided Waters sheds new light on the relationship between environment and society by charting the history of Hawaii’s Molokai island over a 1,000-year period of repeated settlement. From the arrival of the first Polynesians to contact with 18th century European explorers and traders and beyond, to our present era, this study shows how the control of resources, especially water, in a fragile, highly variable environment, has had profound effects on the history of Hawaii. Wade Graham examines the ways environmental variation repeatedly shapes human social and economic structures and how, in turn, manmade environmental degradation influences and reshapes societies.

*Enter code 18W1300 at checkout. Discount cannot be applied to e-books or journals. Discount is taken from original list price. Standard shipping rates apply. This offer is not applicable to previous orders, nor can it be combined with any other promotional offers. Online ordering is currently available in the U.S. and Canada only. See more here: