Biography

James Zarsadiaz is an Associate Professor of History and serves as Director of the Yuchengco Philippine Studies Program. His research and teaching interests include urban and suburban studies, California and the U.S. West, Asian American history, and the twentieth-century United States. Prof. Zarsadiaz was a fellow at both the Smithsonian Institution's National Museum of American History and Asian Pacific American Center.

Prof. Zarsadiaz's first book, Resisting Change in Suburbia: Asian Immigrants and Frontier Nostalgia in L.A. (published with University of California Press), comes out in fall 2022. His first research article, "Design Assimilation in Suburbia: Asian Americans, Built Landscapes, and Suburban Advantage in Los Angeles's San Gabriel Valley since 1970," (co-authored with Becky Nicolaides) was published in the Journal of Urban History (2015). The article won the Urban History Association's Arnold Hirsch Award and the Vernacular Architecture Forum's Catherine W. Bishir Prize. Prof. Zarsadiaz's second article, "Raising Hell in the Heartland: Filipino Chicago and the Anti-Martial Law Movement, 1972- 1986," was published in American Studies (2017) and received an Honorable Mention from the Filipino Section of the Association for Asian American Studies. Prof. Zarsadiaz's third peer-reviewed article, "Methodists against Martial Law: Filipino Chicagoans and the Church's Role in a Global Crusade" was published in Alon: Journal for Filipinx American and Diasporic Studies (2021). He has also published work in Amerasia Journal, International Migration Review, Journal of Asian American Studies, Journal of Social History, New Jersey Studies, and Pacific Historical Review.

James has written articles and op-eds for City Lab, National Journal, San Francisco Chronicle, and Washington Post. He has done live interviews on BBC, CBS, MSNBC, NPR, and Southern California Public Radio regarding current affairs and his research.

Appointments
Program Director, Yuchengco Philippine Studies
Education
PhD, History, Northwestern University
MA, History, Northwestern University
BA, American Studies and Political Science, George Washington University
Research
Urban and Suburban Studies
Urban Planning
California and U.S. West
Asian American History
Oral History
Selected Publications

Zarsadiaz, J. (Forthcoming, fall 2022). Resisting Change in Suburbia: Asian Immigrants and Frontier Nostalgia in L.A. University of California Press.

Zarsadiaz, J. (2021). "Methodists against Martial Law: Filipino Chicagoans and the Church's Role in a Global Crusade." Alon: Journal for Filipinx American and Diasporic Studies 1(3).

Zarsadiaz, J. (2017). "Raising Hell in the Heartland: Filipino Chicago and the Anti-Martial Law Movement, 1972-1986." American Studies, 56(1), 141-162.

Zarsadiaz, J. and Nicolaides, B. (2015). "Design Assimilation in Suburbia: Asian Americans, Built Landscapes, and Suburban Advantage in Los Angeles's San Gabriel Valley since 1970." Journal of Urban History, 43(2), 332-371.

Awards & Distinctions

Best Article (Honorable Mention), Association for Asian American Studies, Filipino Section, 2020

Catherine W. Bishir Prize, Vernacular Architecture Forum, 2018

Arnold Hirsch Award, Urban History Association, 2016


Comments in Recent Media
Why AAPI Heritage Matters, NBC, 5/2/2022.
From Olivia to Bruno to H.E.R., Filipino American artists enjoy a breakout year at Grammys, Los Angeles Times, 3/30/2022.
Nochebuena: Why many Hispanic, Latinx and Filipino families celebrate Christmas on Christmas Eve, USA Today, 12/23/21.
Philippines Struggling After Deadly Typhoon, NBC News, 12/19/21.
The Pandemic's Impact on the Filipino Community, All IN, WFYI (NPR) & WVPE (NPR), 12/14/21.
A Complicated Love Story: Author Carlos Bulosan's Critique of America Gave Filipino Migrants a Voice, USA Today, 11/19/21.
In Daly City, the Bayanihan Spirit Is Alive and Well, KQED, 08/05/2021.
Opinion: Asians in Arcadia against homeless people? It's complicated, Los Angeles Times, 07/01/2021.
For Fil-Am youth, fighting Asian hate in the US means breaking silence, Rappler, 4/14/21.
Cherry Blossom Trees Vandalized in San Francisco’s Japantown, The New York Times, 1/8/2021.
How the Bay Area became the sports world’s epicenter of revolutionary thought, San Francisco Chronicle, 11/24/2020.
The fates of dozens of city statues are under review amid calls to reconsider the past, The San Francisco Examiner, 07/23/2020.
San Francisco’s Toppled Statues, SF Weekly, 07/04/2020.

Media
Geek of the Week: Cookbook Geek.
Local Filipinos Disappointed Trump Didn't Push Duterte on Drug Killings, Southern California Public Radio/KPCC (NPR), 11/13/2017.
Trump Boasts of ‘Great Relationship’ with Philippines’ Duterte at First Formal Meeting, Washington Post, 11/13/2017.
Elaine Chao is Sticking by President Trump. That Shouldn’t be a Surprise, Washington Post, 09/07/2017.
Asians and Asian Americans Swarm to Thriving Diamond Jamboree, Los Angeles Times, 07/02/2017.
Militants in the Philippines: President's Martial Law Order is Déjà Vu for Some Expats, Southern California Public Radio/KPCC (NPR), 05/24/2017.
Asian American Electorate a Sleeping Giant, MSNBC, 09/17/2016.
Why Candidates Should Court Asian American Voters, San Francisco Chronicle, 09/09/2016.