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John Kuo Wei Tchen

John Kuo Wei Tchen is a historian, curator, and writer. Professor Tchen is founding director of the A/P/A (Asian/Pacific /American) Studies Program and Institute at New York University, NYU. He co-founded the Museum of Chinese in America in 1979-80 where he continues to serve as senior historian. Yellow Peril: An Archive of Anti-Asian Fear (2014) is a critical archival study of images, excerpts and essays on the history and contemporary impact of paranoia and xenophobia. He served as the senior historian for a New-York Historical Society exhibition on the impact of Chinese Exclusion Laws on the formation of the US. He is currently working on a two-hour “The American Experience” PBS documentary with Ric Burns and Lishin Yu on the “Chinese Exclusion Act.” And he is also curating a series of exhibit, conferences, and performances retelling NYC-US history from the lens of scientific racism and eugenics hierarchies of “fit” white Protestants versus the world’s “unfit” others. This work will increasingly be presented via location-sensitive wearable tech.

Photo credit: Christopher Ferri

Featuring this expert

‘Otherness’ is More Complex Than Black and White

Video | Feb 3, 2017

Professor Tchen explores the many layers of “otherness” at work in America’s political economy

Tomorrow’s Detroits & Detroit’s Tomorrows

Event Conference Race & Economics | Nov 11–12, 2016

Economics has a race problem.