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Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders in the United States

Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders have always been an important part of American history. This group is identified by the US Census Bureau as one with origins in any of the peoples of the Far East, Southeast Asia, Indian subcontinent or Pacific Island

Tips For Searching About This Topic

Search Tip #1

A search term can be used in combination with another search term to improve the relevance of your search results in databases, the Library's Discover and Catalog searches, and even in Google and other search engines.

To find materials about race identity among Americans of African descent, start with the search term "African Americans" then add a second or even third search term.


  • "Asian Americans" AND identity
  • "Asian Americans" AND "social conditions"
  • "Asian Americans" AND representation
  • "Pacific Islanders Americans" AND identity
  • "Pacific Islanders" AND "social conditions"
  • "Pacific Islanders" AND representation

Search Tip #2

Try searching "Asian Americans" or "Pacific Islanders" as a subject instead of a keyword to limit results to materials that are about these cultures. A keyword search only means that your searched term appears somewhere in the text of the books and articles in your results.

To broaden your results to materials that are likely to cover other demographics, a search term like ethnicity, "ethnic groups," "racial differences," or minorities may be effective.

Search Tip #3

As an example, here are just a few of the subject terms we noted when retrieving the books listed on this page:

Asian Americans -- Intellectual life Asian Americans -- Race identity
Race relations in literature Racism
Criticism, interpretation, etc Women, Asian -- History
Women, Asian Women, Asian -- Social conditions
Women, Asian -- Social life and customs Asian Americans -- Education -- Social aspects
Asian Americans -- Race identity Educational equalization -- United States
Ethnicity -- United States Power (Social sciences) -- United States
United States -- Race relations Group identity
Identity politics Identity (Psychology) -- Social aspects
Cultural pluralism Multiculturalism