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Celebrate Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month!


Celebrate Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month this year with WTIU. Recognize the ways members of the community have added immensely to the American experiment and how they've thrived through difficult times. 

Tuesday, May 2
10:00pm – Rising Against Asian Hate: One Day in March
Explore the fight against Asian American hate following the March 2021 mass shootings at three spas in Atlanta. Examine how this critical moment of racial reckoning sheds light on the struggles, triumphs and achievements of AAPI communities
Rising Against Asian Hate: One Day in March | Bias Against AAPI Communities | PBS

Sunday, May 7
2:00pm – Hawaiiana
Examine the enduring legacy of Winona "Aunty Nona" Beamer, a venerated educator, storyteller, composer and hula expert who dedicated her life to preserving and celebrating traditional Hawaiian culture. In her 20s, Aunty Nona formed a Hawaiian dance troupe that toured the U.S., eventually performing at Carnegie Hall and bringing the ancient art of hula to the wider public. Later, as a teacher at the Kamehameha Schools, she became a pivotal force in bringing Hawaiian culture back into the classroom. She coined the now well-known term "Hawaiiana" to represent a curriculum that included the best of Hawaiian culture, history and knowledge. Weaving together archival music and dance performances with past interviews and footage of Aunty Nona and her sons Keola and Kapona Beamer, HAWAIIANA offers a profile of a pioneering woman whose wisdom and life story continue to spread the message of aloha around the world.
Hawaiiana | PBS HAWAIʻI PRESENTS - YouTube

7:00pm – Before They Take Us Away
At the start of World War II, as the US Government prepared to forcibly remove and incarcerate all Japanese Americans living on the West Coast, a small number of Japanese Americans took their fate in their own hands and fled the coast, becoming refugees in their own country, on a forced migration into the unknown. Before They Take Us Away is the first documentary to chronicle the untold stories of the "self-evacuees" who spent the war years outside the camps, as they struggled to rebuild their lives and overcome poverty, isolation, hostility and racial violence.
A Film from Unwashed Masses Productions ( 

Sunday, May 14
2:00pm –
Shinmachi: Stronger Than a Tsunami
An hour-long documentary shares the resilience of a unique Japanese community in Hilo, Hawaii. Their stories bring to life the once-thriving small business district founded by Japanese immigrant plantation laborers who made the bold decision to establish their economic independence from the sugar industry.

7:00pm – Betrayed: Surviving An American Concentration Camp
Hear the story of a group of Japanese Americans and their incarceration by the U.S. government during World War II. It also explores the long-term effects of this incarceration and the phenomenon of intergenerational trauma. More than 40 camp survivors and descendants bring an unparalleled immediacy and urgency to the story.
Betrayed: Surviving an American Concentration Camp | Trailer - YouTube
Betrayed: Surviving an American Concentration Camp | PBS

Tuesday, May 16
9:00pm – Nam June Paik: Moon Is The Oldest Tv
See the world through the eyes of Nam June Paik, the father of video art and coiner of the term "electronic superhighway." Experience the acclaimed artist's creative evolution, as Academy Award nominee Steven Yeun reads from Paik's own writings.
Nam June Paik: Moon Is the Oldest TV | About the documentary | American Masters | PBS

Sunday, May 21
7:00pm – Registry
Who will remember us when we're gone?" asks 90 year-old Seiki Oshiro, who helped put together the only comprehensive list, a registry of members of the secret Japanese American U.S. Army unit that fought in the Pacific during World War II.
The Registry | Preview | PBS

Monday, May 22
10:00pm – Fanny: The Right To Rock
Co-founded by Filipina American and queer teenagers, Fanny is the first all women band to release an album with a major record label (Warner/Reprise, 1970). Revered by David Bowie, meet the most groundbreaking rock group you've never heard of yet.
Fanny: The Right To Rock (

Monday, May 29
10:00pm – Independent Lens: The Donut King
Hear the incredible story of Ted Ngoy. After fleeing Cambodia for the United States, he built a multi-million-dollar fried pastry empire, Christy's Doughnuts, and began living his American Dream. But a great rise often comes with a great fall.
The Donut King | Our Films | Independent Lens | PBS