Your KERA TV viewing guide for Asian American & Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander Heritage Month
May is AANHPI Heritage Month! Dive into stories about Asian Americans, native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders with this 2022 collection of documentaries, show episodes, and on-air KERA TV programming.
Three ways to watch:
▸ On air: KERA TV channel 13.1 in North Texas, or on our online TV player
▸ Stream on this page or on our on-demand video portal
▸ KERA TV, KERA FM, and KXT FM members are able to stream extended-access PBS programs online with Passport. Those are marked with a little blue compass icon. Become a member for as little as $5/month or $60/year. Learn how to activate Passport.
▸ Watch Sunday, May 1 from 1pm-6pm on KERA TV
▸ Or stream all five episodes now via Passport
Asian Americans is a five-hour film series that chronicles the contributions and challenges of Asian Americans, the fastest-growing ethnic group in America. Personal histories and new academic research casts a fresh lens on U.S. history and the role Asian Americans have played in it.
Independent Lens | Try Harder
▸ Watch Monday, May 2 at 9pm on KERA TV
At Lowell High School, San Francisco’s academic pressure cooker, the kids are stressed out. With a majority Asian American student body, high-achieving seniors share their dreams and anxieties about getting into a top university. But is college worth the grind?
▸ Watch Tuesday, May 2 at 7pm
▸ Or stream it now via Passport:
Host Henry Louis Gates, Jr. shows journalists Christiane Amanpour, Ann Curry and Lisa Ling that the stories within their own family trees are every bit as compelling as the news stories they have been covering for the world.
Reel South | Seadrift
▸ Watch Tuesday, May 3 at 10pm on KERA TV
In 1979, a fatal shooting ignites a maelstrom of hostilities against Vietnamese refugee fishermen in Seadrift, Texas, on the Gulf Coast. Set during the early days of Vietnamese refugee arrival in the U.S., Seadrift examines this turbulent yet little-seen chapter of American history and explores its consequences that continue to reverberate today.
KERA TV programming
Betrayed: Surviving an American Concentration Camp
▸ Watch Thursday, May 5 at 10pm on KERA TV
This documentary tells 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.
▸ Watch Thursday, May 5 at 11pm on KERA TV
▸ Or stream it now via Passport
This film breaks open the hidden history of the U.S. Army’s Military Intelligence Service (MIS) during World War II — a story made possible because of a few aging Japanese American veterans with a little internet savvy and a lot of determination.
American Masters | Amy Tan: Unintended Memoirs
▸ Watch Friday, May 6 at 8pm on KERA TV
▸ Or stream it now via Passport
This is the story of the author whose first novel, The Joy Luck Club, was published to great commercial and critical success. With the blockbuster film adaption that followed as well as additional best-selling novels, librettos, short stories and memoirs, Amy Tan firmly established herself as one of the most prominent and respected American literary voices working today.
American Masters | Waterman: Duke — The Spirit of Aloha
▸ Watch Tuesday, May 10 at 8pm on KERA TV
Narrated by Jason Momoa, discover the inspiring story and impact of five-time Olympic medalist Duke Kahanamoku. He shattered swimming records and globalized surfing while overcoming racism in a lifetime of personal challenges.
Japan with Sue Perkins
▸ Watch Thursday, May 12 at 10pm on KERA TV
Sue Perkins explores a country caught between ancient tradition and dazzling technology: Japan. It’s often described as a futuristic city and technological mecca. But, Japan is also steeped in tradition.
In this back-to-back two-episode program, Sue visits Tokyo, with its neon digital displays, thronging population, and bullet-fast trains. She travels to the mountainous villages and meets the artisans finding new ways to preserve ancient traditions.
The rift between age-old traditions and new-age technology is widening, as the country strives to honor its past – and embrace the future.
American Masters | Tyrus
▸ Watch Tuesday, May 17 at 9pm on KERA TV
Watch a clip:
Until his death at the age of 106, Tyrus Wong was America’s oldest living Chinese American artist and one of the last remaining artists from the golden age of Disney animation. The quiet beauty of his Eastern-influenced paintings had a pioneering impact on American art and popular culture.
American Experience | Mr. Tornado
▸ Watch Thursday, May 19 at 10pm on KERA TV
Mr. Tornado is the remarkable story of Ted Fujita, whose groundbreaking work in research and applied science saved thousands of lives and helped Americans prepare for and respond to dangerous weather phenomena.
▸ Watch Thursday, May 19 at 11pm on KERA TV
▸ Or watch it now via Passport
▸ Related, from NPR: Norman Mineta, first Asian American Cabinet secretary, dies at age 90
Meet the statesman who served as cabinet secretary for Presidents Clinton and George W. Bush. Imprisoned by the U.S. during World War II for his Japanese ancestry, Mineta rose to become the first Asian American to serve in a presidential cabinet.
Independent Lens | One Child Nation
▸ Watch Monday, May 23 at 9pm on KERA TV
After the birth of her first child, filmmaker Nanfu Wang returns to China to speak with her family and explore the ripple effect of that country’s devastating social experiment, the one-child policy. At its core, One Child Nation is a riveting personal story revealing shocking human rights violations and forces us all to reckon with the consequences of blind obedience.
American Experience | Plague at the Golden Gate
▸ Watch Tuesday, May 24 at 8pm on KERA TV
Follow the gripping story of the race against time to save San Francisco and the nation from an outbreak of bubonic plague in 1900.
American Experience | The Chinese Exclusion Act
▸ Watch Thursday, May 26 at 10pm on KERA TV
Examine the origin, history and impact of the 1882 law that made it illegal for Chinese workers to come to America and for Chinese nationals already here ever to become U.S. citizens. The first in a long line of acts targeting the Chinese for exclusion, it remained in force for more than 60 years.
Rising Against Asian Hate: One Day in March
▸ Watch Tuesday, May 31 at 8pm on KERA TV
We remember the victims of March 16 shootings in Atlanta. Robert Peterson remembers his mother Yong Ae Yue in the CAAM-supported documentary "Rising Against Asian Hate: One Day in March" premiering May 31 on @PBS. #ExploringHate #RememberingMarch16 pic.twitter.com/G1Q4udcCyT
— CAAM (@CAAM) March 16, 2022
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.
PBS Indies | Employed Identity: Duong Khac Linh
▸ Watch now:
Music producer Duong Khach Linh proves that music truly is a universal language as he moves back to Vietnam to pursue a successful music career.
Reel South | Gimme a Faith
▸ Watch now:
Thousands of Chinese students arrive in the United States each year, often confronting loneliness and culture-clash upon arrival. Arriving in North Carolina to study filmmaking, Hao Zhang is surprised to find a unique community of Chinese students, connected by a newly discovered evangelical Christianity that is often at stark odds with their communist roots in China.
PBS Digital Studios | Are you “AAPI” or “Asian American”? It’s complicated.
▸ Watch now:
How many A’s in AAPI? Dolly & Adrian hear from South Asian, Southeast Asian, and Pacific Islander voices to explore the pros and cons of disaggregating Asian American as a statistical category. From PBS Digital Studios series A People’s History of Asian America.
▸ Explore more stories of Asian and Pacific Americans with these documentaries and episodes curated by PBS.
▸ Stay informed on race in current events with KERA News’ coverage
▸ PBS also has a collection of resources to help parents discuss race and racism with children
▸ Go to video.kera.org to watch more documentaries and series