Welcome to the Reference Library of The 1990 Institute

Selected resources on Modern China, US-China Relations, and the Asian American Experience for Educators, Students and the General Public

The content in this library is updated continually however, it is not an exhaustive source of information on the above subjects. We welcome your input and suggestions. Please contact us at contact@1990institute.org for questions, comments, and suggestions of resources. You can also use the Suggest a Resource form to recommend your resources.

Lectures of 2024 Teachers Workshop

U.S.-China Relations: Untangling Campaign Rhetoric and Understanding Policy

Held on June 20, 2024

Visit the Reference Page for this workshop or more resources

Funding provided by the The Henry Luce Foundation

Asian American Identity: At the Intersection of Perpetual Foreigner and Pop Culture Trendsetter

Held on March 6, 2024

Visit the Reference Page for this workshop or more resources

Downloadable presentation (pdf) by Jeff Yang

Downloadable presentation (pdf) by Ziyao Tian

Lectures of our 2022 – 2023 Teachers Workshop


Media Narratives: Evaluating U.S.-China Headlines

Held on November 15, 2023

Visit our Reference Library for more resources

Teaching Asian American Narratives through Literature

Held on September 27, 2023

Teaching Asian American Narratives Through Literature. Downloadable PDF

Dr. Noreen Naseem Rodríguez & Diana Liu – Speaker Presentation. Downloadable PDF

Visit our Reference Library for more resources

U.S.-China Relations – Coexistence in a Changing World

Held on June 28, 2023

Visit our Reference Library for more resources

Asian American Trailblazers in Civil Rights

Held on March 22, 2023

Visit our Reference Library for more resources

Missing in History® – The Asian American Journey

Held on July 30, 2022

The Making of Asian Americans, by Lok Siu

Mapping Asian American Identity, by Margaret Yee

Asian American Legal Cases that Shaped Civil Rights for All, by John Trasviña

The China You Should Know – Past and Present

Held on August 6, 2022

China’s Past is Always Present, by Tom Gold

China and the World, by Clay Dube

The 1990 Institute, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, develops and implements programs to promote U.S. – China cross-cultural understanding and the Asian American experience. This library also contains references to selected educational resources available on the Internet.

We welcome anyone interested in learning more about the fascinating and complex stories about the Asian experience in America, what life is really like in China today, and the multi-faceted and nuanced relationship between the United States and China. Although anyone can read and learn from these sources, we have, in particular, also provided materials that are suitable for teaching middle and high school students.

This site is not a comprehensive source, but includes selected media that we feel best explain the subjects at hand and are especially suitable for students and young adults. It also includes all the lectures and lesson plans from our annual China Now for Teachers Program for middle school and high school teachers for the past eight years.

Please go to How to Search for ways on finding things in this library.

Recently Posted

Beyond the Tiles: Making Connections Through Mahjong

Mahjong is a game of luck and strategy that connects people, transcending geography, ethnicity, gender, culture, and generation, acting as a unifying force among diverse groups. (July 13, 2023)


Exclusion: The Shared Asian American Experience

This is a fundamental video about the Asian American experience of not being part of a country they call HOME. (March 24, 2023)


Waves of Immigrants: The Asian American Journey

This is a foundational video about the Asian American immigrants’ experience since the mid-nineteenth century. (January 27, 2023)


The Master of Influence with Si-Fu Bruce Lee

Be like water and flow along with us as this new video educates us on Bruce Lee’s story from a new angle. (Nov 27, 2022)


Why are Chinese and Americans the Key to Life on Planet Earth?

Did you know that the U.S. and China are the world’s top two emitters of greenhouse gasses and there are steps individuals can take to address climate change? (Nov 18, 2022)


What is Gaokao? The world’s toughest college admissions test

Three Chinese high school students, from different socioeconomic and geographic backgrounds, talked to the 1990 Institute about their Gaokao experience and how important this exam is to their futures. (October 21, 2022)


Ping Pong Diplomacy – Can History Repeat Itself?

A Ping Pong Diplomacy refresher commemorating the events leading up to the 50th anniversary of President Nixon’s visit to the People’s Republic of China in 1972 and the case for continuing the 50-year friendship. (June 23, 2022)


Millennials without Borders: U.S. and Chinese Millennials

The Millennial generation is the largest in history for both China and US.  They are reaching their prime working and spending years and their impact on the economy and the world is huge. This is the first tech savvy generation, one that lived through the beginning of the internet and where there are more exchanges between the two countries. Are they similar or different in their thinking, goals, and spending habits, given their respective political framework? This post will tell you more. (May 20, 2022)


Chinese Millennials: Reflections on Life and America

We sent a film team onto the streets of Shanghai to conduct a sampling of candid interviews to find out what people think about their lives and about America. You may be surprised at some of the answers. (April 8, 2022)


Plogging: Trash Runners of Shanghai

Chinese millennials are becoming more aware of litter and the connection between consumption and the environment. As the movement of plogging (jogging while picking up litter) spreads to China, millennials in Shanghai are organizing to clean up their streets. (March 18, 2022)


The Rise of China as Seen Through Mrs. Wong’s Purse

Although Mrs. Wong is a fictitious character, her experience reflects that of many Chinese living through five decades of policy and economic change in China. The contents in her purse changed as her life changed. Visit this Reference Library page and watch the video about Mrs. Wong and her experience during the past 50 years. (February 28, 2022)


U.S. and China Seek Relationship Counseling: Technology in the Crosshairs

It seems time for the U.S. and China to seek counseling 40 years into their relationship. Weary and wary, what will happen to all the successes born of their long-standing relationship deeply rooted in the global community, but strained by the recent rise of China? What would be your recommendation?


Chinese and Western Zodiacs – So Different. So Similar

The Chinese zodiac is not the only zodiac system around the world. Many cultures created their own. This post includes a video by the 1990 Institute comparing the Chinese and Western zodiacs and additional resources for you to learn more and a downloadable lesson guide suitable for high school and college learners.


Reframing Perceptions: Asian American Women Journalist Trailblazers

Resource page for the January 20, 2022 webinar where 4 trailblazing Asian American Women Journalists, Weijia Jiang, Josie Chen, Mei Fong, and Helen Zia, talked about their career, their involvement with fighting against anti-Asian hate, what lies ahead.


Christmas in China

Is Christmas celebrated in China? This video, produced by the 1990 Institute, will give you some fun details of how Christmas has evolved and is currently celebrated in China!


Beyond Shang-Chi: Superheroes, Masculinity, and Asian American Representation

This post is an updated version of “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the First Asian Superhero” post and it pushes the discussion on Asian American representation in the media deeper with the addition of the recording of a webinar on the same topic, and reference and teaching materials for 9-12 grade teachers.


A Tale of Two Countries

This video in our “China in Perspective” series juxtaposes U.S. data with China data to gain a better understanding of China today. This video puts in perspective a wealthy country like the U.S. and a developing country like China to show that what happens in each country can impact each other and the world.


If China were a Country of 100 People

This is a primer for the “China in Perspective” series, providing a general overview of the demographic breakdown of the Chinese population, from wealth distribution to education, to social media and video game usage, and more! 


The Rise of China and Asian Americans

The 1990 Institute and the USC U.S.-China Institute presented an engaging conversation on the U.S. government’s response to the rise of China as a superpower and the impact on Asian Americans and America’s global competitiveness.


Numbers Don’t Lie? Model Minority explained in 3 minutes

This 1990 Institute video unpacks the Model Minority myth and unveils the diversity of various subgroups that make up the Asian Americans.


Call It What It Is – Racism Against Asian Americans

A 1990 Institute Voices, Visibility, and Vision – Lifting the Fog Around China and Asian Americans video series production plus reference materials and teachers resources


Chinese Americans: The History You Were Never Told

A 1990 Institute Beyond the Conversation Webinar by StandWithAsians

This webinar was presented by StandWithAsians, a group of volunteers who mobilized Americans to spread awareness, learn, and show support for the Asian American community on March 26, 2021, the anniversary of The Nationality Act of 1790.


“Beyond Headlines: Protecting Asian Americans During Violent Times”

A 1990 Institute Beyond the Conversation Webinar

With the backdrop of rising violence against Asian Americans, the 1990 Institute brought together highly respected leaders from the Asian and Black communities to lend perspective and present solutions on how to improve community public safety while underscoring the necessity for allyship among all our communities.


“Censored by China, under Attach in US: What’s Next for WeChat  “
by Eileen Guo

While many Chinese-Americans actually agree that WeChat deserved more scrutiny, few believed that Trump’s ban was the right way to go about it.


“COVID-19 and Xenophobia Towards Asians
by Helen Zia

at the 2020 Teachers Workshop conducted by the 1990 Institute and Asia Society of Northern California


“Artificial Intelligence and Implicit Bias”
by L. Song Richardson

at the 2020 Teachers Workshop conducted by the 1990 Institute and Asia Society of Northern California