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The Asianadian: An Asian Canadian Magazine (1978-1985) was and remains the only Asian Canadian serial that was overtly anti-racist, anti-sexist, and anti-homophobic while maintaining a decidedly cultural aspect with poetry, prose, book reviews, crossword puzzles, Dubious Award (to the most obvious Asian Canadian stereotypes), and cartoons.


The Asianadian was published from 1978 to 1985 with 24 issues. It was founded by Tony Chan, Cheuk Kwan, and Lau Bo (aka Paul S. Levine) at a Mars Cafe lunch on College Avenue in Toronto Canada.

The Asianadian was the first Asian Canadian magazine that published the early works of SKY Lee, Paul Yee, and Rick Shiomi. Landmark essays on being gay, lesbian and Asian (Gerald Chan, Richard Fung, Phoenix), and initial pieces on the anti-W5 civil rights movement, Muslims in Canada, Asian Canadian views on Quebec, etc. were highlighted.

There was also an interview with Chinese American director Wang Wang immediately after his seminal film, Chan is Missing. Wang later directed Joy Luck Club and Smoke with Harvey Keitel.

"Wayne Wang’s Interview with The Asianadian" [1]

Writers wrote on Asian Canadian history and Asian politics. There were also departments like commentary (On the Firing Line), interviews (Face to Face), International Forum, Heritage Reruns, Community News, and We're Just Children. Momoye Sugiman edited two issues on Women.


Cover art was by Tin Yum-lau, Gene Chu,Wayne Lum, Sunny Urata, Andy Tong, etc.

Noted editors, writers, and contributors included Roy Ito, Shima Okuda, Richard Fung, Momoye Sugiman, Bobby Sui, Nancy Tong, M.L. Handa, Amin-ur Rahim, David Chuen-Yan Lai, Dan Shimabuku, Nancy Ing, Maryka Omatsu, Danny Lee, Prem Ghosh, Leonard Preyra, Krisantha Sri, Barbara Yip, Shin Imai, Satish Dar, Mina Wong, [Jim Wong-Chu], Suwanda H.J. Sugnasiri Kerri Sakamoto, and Jack Seto.

Joy Kogawa, Cyril Dabydeen, Lakshmi Gill, Sean Gunn, Himani Bannerji, Krissantha Sri Bhaggiyadatta, Rienzi Cruz, Suniti Namjoshi, Rosy Chan, Ram K. Rajh, Stephen Gill, Carol Matsui, Sylvia Jong, and Roy Miki were some who provided poems.


  1. To find new dignity and pride in being Asian in Canada.
  2. To promote an understanding between Asian Canadians and other Canadians.
  3. To speak out against those conditions, individuals and institutions perpetuating racism in Canada.
  4. To stand up against the distortions of our history in Canada, stereotypes, economic exploitations, and the general tendency towards injustice and inequality practiced on minority groups.
  5. To provide a forum for Asian Canadian writers, artists, musicians, etc .
  6. To promote unity by bridging the gap between Asians with roots in Canada and recent immigrants.


"Since the demise of The Asianadian magazine... there has been no national forum for discussing cultural or political issues for a pan-Asian audience." Richard Fung in Li, Voices Rising, 2007, p. 29

"I went to the library and found those back issues of The Asianadian. It was great because some of the people who wrote for the magazine later became professional writers- pretty established names like Richard Fung and Joy Kogawa." Kyo Maclear in Li, Voices Rising, 2007, p. 209.

Editorials are excerpted in Ginger Post.

Hard copies of the 24 issues can be found in the Toronto Public Library (Toronto Reference Library) and in the libraries at the University of British Columbia, University of Toronto (East Asian Library), and the University of Washington. An electronic version is at Memorial University of Newfoundland and the Historical Society of Pennsylvania.

An extensive review of The Asianadian is contained in Xiaoping Li, Voices Rising: Asian Canadian Cultural Activism, Vancouver: University of British Columbia Press, 2007. [2] [3]



Directory of Issues