Vi and J of the Journey to the West podcast and I have come together to discuss how important it is to reach out and collaborate with each other as Asian American content creators. We thought it would be a very valuable collaboration to share about our experiences growing up as Southeast Asians who did not come from an upper middle/middle class background. We’ll be talking about how differences in socioeconomic background and education have led some of us Asian Americans to feel disconnected and invisible within the community; for example, how does our upbringing affect our engagement in academic dialogues about race and identity? How does the role of intergenerational difference contribute to where we stand as a community on the bread and butter issues? We will also reexamine what it means to be “Asian American” - is there a better term for us to claim and use to refer ourselves as a means to establish solidarity through our shared experiences? (Hint: how about Asian diasporic?)
Vi and J were some of the first who reached out to me when I was being harassed online, so I’ve also invited them to share their past experiences of being cyberbullied within spaces like Reddit and Twitter. Moving forward, Project Voice will be inviting from activists and content creators to share their fight against toxic Internet culture.
Although she is shy in the camera, Vi is an early 20s post grad who enjoys travel and skincare/makeup. She, along with the members, kickstarted JTTW to talk about the things she loves while keeping it real at the same time.
J is a 2nd-generation Fil-Am living on the East Coast and a regular voice on “Journey to the West,” a podcast about diaspora issues, topical news & feminism, hosted by Asian women. Her interests include reflecting on social issues and exploring complex identities. Connect with her @j_maraan on Twitter, and catch new episodes of the @JTTWpodcast!
As a part of Project Voice’s rebranding movement, I’ve been reaching out to speakers outside the U.S. and putting more focus on identifying the podcast as a platform for the Asian diaspora all over the world. This time, we’ll be learning about the Asian activist community and culture in Australia. In today’s podcast, I have invited Erin Chew, who I first heard about through her work on YOMYOMF.com, will be sharing her knowledge about the history of Asian Australia as well as what’s been hot on the current agenda for the organization she founded, the Asian Australian Alliance.
Moving forward, Project Voice will be inviting from activists and content creators to share their fight against toxic Internet culture. Erin Chew will share her bit on her combat against online bullying during her active years online.
Erin Wen Ai Chew (周文愛) is an Australian entrepreneur, policy advisor and social activist, who is just about to complete a Masters of Human Rights.
Erin is the founder for the Asian Australian Alliance, which is a grassroots advocacy based network with its primary aim of advocating for the common interests of the Asian Australian community. The Asian Australian Alliance is now a national brand and has around 20 conveners working on different areas and sectors. These sectors include: Asian Australian Alliance, Asian Australian Alliance Women’s Forum, Asian Australian Alliance Young Leaders, Asian Australian Rainbow Alliance and the Movement for Asian Australian Academics.
Via Erin, the Asian Australian Alliance has created positive change for the community and highlighted the issues of concern at a mainstream level. Examples include, running a national campaign against the changes of Section 18C of the Racial Discrimination Act, speaking to the media against racism and discrimination, and highlighting the issues of the bamboo ceiling.
Erin has been featured in many media platforms including, The Guardian Australia, Sydney Morning Herald, SBS, ABC News, News.com.au, Daily Mail Australia, The Age, Canberra Times, The Australian and the Australian Financial Review. Erin has also written for SBS News, The Guardian and other media platforms in the USA and the UK on issues of cultural diversity and social cohesion.