For the first time, a specialist in Asian American literature has been hired by Yale, reports the Yale Daily.
Sunny Xiang who just arrived on campus will teach a junior seminar, Asian American Literature, in the spring through the English Department.
Xiang’s hiring comes after the Asian American Studies Task Force staged a campaign in which dozens of students held up white boards listing all the courses Yale did not offer.
Currently, only one Asian American course is being offered this semester–Asian American History. That class was overflowing with more than 100 students showing up on the first day. Many had to sit on the floor and the class had to be eventually moved to a larger room.
Task force members say Xiang’s hiring is not enough.
“I have my reservations about what administrative intentions might exist behind placating our requests that are the most short-term … especially during an academic year with dwindling course numbers and professors in the ethnic studies programs,” task force member Yoon Hee Chang said. “What happens when we ask for more than just faculty? … Where will [Asian American Studies] at Yale be, in the long-term?”
You can read Xiang’s thoughts on this controversy in the Yale Daily.