May is Asian Pacific American Heritage Month which was officially designated and signed into law in 1992.
Library of Congress defines the geographic areas of the world as the following:
“...A rather broad term, Asian-Pacific encompasses all of the Asian continent and the Pacific islands of Melanesia (New Guinea, New Caledonia, Vanuatu, Fiji, and the Solomon Islands), Micronesia (Marianas, Guam, Wake Island, Palau, Marshall Islands, Kiribati, Nauru and the Federated States of Micronesia) and Polynesia (New Zealand, Hawaiian Islands, Rotuma, Midway Islands, Samoa, American Samoa, Tonga, Tuvalu, Cook Islands, French Polynesia, and Easter Island).”
Asia is the world’s largest continent in size and population with fifty countries and two dependencies: Afghanistan, Armenia, Azerbaijan(Asian), Bahrain, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Brunei, Cambodia, China, Cyprus, East Timor, Egypt (Asian), Georgia (Asian), India, Indonesia (Asian), Iran, Iraq, Israel, Japan, Jordan, Kazakhstan (Asian), North Korea, South Korea, Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan, Laos, Lebanon, Malaysia, Maldives, Mongolia, Myanmar, Nepal, Oman, Pakistan, Philippines, Qatar, Russia (Asian), Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Syria, Taiwan, Tajikistan, Thailand, Turkey (Asian), Turkmenistan, United Arab Emirates, Uzbekistan, Vietnam, Yemen, and two dependencies: Gaza Strip and West Bank.
There are hundreds of cultures, religions, ethnic groups, languages, and dialects in each country. Despite past and present differences, some peaceful and some violent, the overall canon of literature is vast, going back centuries, covering all manner of interest and thought: religion, philosophy, astronomy, mathematics, medicine, cooking, art, music, dance, theater, business, sex, love, war, government, and multitudes of stories and folklore. In the written word, the past and the present are alive and well-read in the United States and abroad. May is the month to honor and celebrate this rich heritage from authors who live here and from those who live in the various countries and regions.
There is no way to cover books from all of these countries and regions, therefore here is a small selection of ancient classics available in e-media. Many of the books, character names and subjects have become very much a part of popular culture and can be found in films, animated feature films, children’s books, graphic novels, television programs, and self-help books. The names Aladdin and Sinbad come from another time and place, not from popular entertainers, and Ali Baba was a person’s name long before it became the name of a multinational corporation.