178 episodes

Sharon Lee Thony and Raman Sehgal are two MODERN MINORITIES - Asian-American industry pros "making it" (?) - even though they never became the doctors their parents wanted them to be. Each week, they are joined by folks of all stripes - entrepreneurs, corporates, athletes, reporters, politicians, entertainers, and more - to uncover how our different cultural backgrounds shape how we uniquely experience the world. MODERN MINORITIES is a collection of conversations about work and life through the lens of race and gender. It is a show where we talk about “the thing” that everyone is thinking about, but nobody is actually talking about it. New episodes drop weekly.

Modern Minorities Sharon Thony & Raman Sehgal

    • Society & Culture
    • 4.9 • 122 Ratings

Sharon Lee Thony and Raman Sehgal are two MODERN MINORITIES - Asian-American industry pros "making it" (?) - even though they never became the doctors their parents wanted them to be. Each week, they are joined by folks of all stripes - entrepreneurs, corporates, athletes, reporters, politicians, entertainers, and more - to uncover how our different cultural backgrounds shape how we uniquely experience the world. MODERN MINORITIES is a collection of conversations about work and life through the lens of race and gender. It is a show where we talk about “the thing” that everyone is thinking about, but nobody is actually talking about it. New episodes drop weekly.

    Sharon & Raman (on) What’s Your Story

    Sharon & Raman (on) What’s Your Story

    This week the mic gets turned on Sharon & Raman! Ever since we started this show, we've had the privilege of being invited to share our story on other folks' podcasts. One of those shows is "What's at our Story" by longtime FrieMMd of the Pod Matt Story - who you've heard more than a few times on this podcast. Waaaay back when in 2020, Matt asked us to share some of our story on his pod. We hope you'll enjoy it, and be sure to check out Matt's show "What's Your Story" wherever you get your favorite podcasts...
    This episode is sponsored by the Department of Health & Human Services, who’s encouraging you and your community to make sure you’ve got the COVID-19 Vaccine & Booster. We can do this, together. Find vaccines and boosters near you @ VACCINES.gov

    LEARN ABOUT MATT

    mattestory.com


    twitter.com/mattestory //.instagram.com/mattestory

    Podcast: https://apple.co/2De6Tve


    OTHER PODCAST CHATS WITH MATT

    9/6/2020: Matt’s on “Modern Minorities” (part 1): modmypod.com/episodes/25-matt-story-knows-you-have-super-powers

    2/28/2021: Matt’s 2nd MM appearance - modmypod.com/episodes/ep-63-black-history-to-be-continued

    7/4/2021: Seeking Answers Through Allyship - Sharon & Raman’s 2ND appearance on “What’s Your Story”: https://apple.co/3L2DwKS


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    • 1 hr 3 min
    Alice Hsu's (embracing) identity

    Alice Hsu's (embracing) identity

    “I knew I looked different, but didn't really notice it until kids started pointing it out. It was time for me to be proud of who I am. If you can't embrace who you are, how can you embrace others?”
    Sharon’s good friend, Alice Hsu, has been on our podcast twice in the past, but this is the first time we’re focusing the discussion on her. Alice grew up in Canton, Michigan where she was one of the only Taiwanese kids in her area. Her first-generation story is similar to many of our previous guests, but unique in that we’ve only known Alice for who she is today: a bold, passionate Asian-American woman who is proud of her culture and heritage.
    In our discussion, we dive deeper into stories that led to Alice becoming… well, Alice. We talk about how food was a way for Alice to connect with others and those around her as she learned to embrace her roots, while also being the source of bullying and a defining factor for social acceptance - “home lunch” of boiled tea eggs and steamed buns was alienating, whereas Lunchables were okay, who can relate?
    From reminiscing about life in our early twenties sharing a 1-bedroom apartment in NYC among four roommates to talking about the types of men that Alice’s dad thinks would make for a great husband, this conversation was super fun and eye-opening for Sharon. We wish that we had time to truly get to know all of our friends in this way. We are so glad that we had a chance to spend quality time with an old friend and know that you’ll enjoy reconnecting with Alice too.
    Note: You’ve heard Alice on our panel discussion about education and for the very first Lunar New Year episode from season 1. Links below to listen again.
    LEARN ABOUT ALICE

    Alice Hsu on MM to talk Chinese New Years: https://bit.ly/3rxYrKH


    Alice Hsu on MM to talk about Teachers during COVID: https://bit.ly/3drjvRK


    Apparel Producer : ​​https://www.linkedin.com/in/alicehsu1/


    Rodan + Fields Consultant: https://alicehsu.myrandf.com/en-us/


    Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/kistahsun/


    MENTIONS

    FILM: Amelie https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0211915/


    TV SHOW: Full House https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0092359/


    PERSON: Oprah Winfrey https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oprah_Winfrey



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    • 1 hr 7 min
    Kabir Sehgal’s (infinite) creations

    Kabir Sehgal’s (infinite) creations

    “I don't wanna work at a company for 30 years, and then my entire identity is gone. So I ended up writing four books. And my officemates would say, ‘How do you do all this stuff?’ You gotta find the intersection points.”
    Kabir Sehgal is a many things: A bestselling author of sixteen books (across nonfiction and fiction). A multi-Grammy-winning jazz musician. A producer and writer of documentaries on immmigration an work. Kabir and his work have been featured in The New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, CNN, PBS, NPR, C-SPAN, National Geographic and many more places. He’s done work with the late Congressman John Lewis, Muhammad Yunus, Andrew Young and many more. Sehgal is a US Navy veteran and reserve officer who served on active duty with special operations in the Middle East, and he received the Defense Meritorious Service Medal. He served as a speechwriter on presidential campaigns. But despite NOT being related (that we know of), Raman discovered him years ago...when someone gifted his daughter the book “The Wheels on the Tuk Tuk” - a book that has become a family favorite, and that we’ve gifted to friends with new kids around the world. So how does someone go from Wall Street and the Military to jazz music and kids books? One cup of chai and samosa at a time. 

    LEARN ABOUT KABIR

    Kabir.cc

    instagram.com/kabir.cc // twitter.com/kabirsehgal

    FILM PRODUCER https://www.imdb.com/name/nm8903549/


    MUSIC PRODUCER: https://www.allmusic.com/artist/kabir-sehgal-mn0002637161/credits


    AUTHOR: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/1285051.Kabir_Sehgal


    BOOK: The Wheels on the Tuk Tuk: goodreads.com/en/book/show/24885579

    HBR: “Why You Should Have (at Least) Two Careers” https://hbr.org/2017/04/why-you-should-have-at-least-two-careers


    ALBUM: American Dreamers Project (won 3 Grammys:): https://open.spotify.com/album/2mAJfyyvdfRuraIVqjUQJA




    MENTIONS

    TV: Succession - https://www.imdb.com/title/tt7660850/


    BOOK: B******t Jobs (David Graeber) - https://www.goodreads.com/en/book/show/34466958


    BOOK: Daily Rituals: How Artists Work (Mason Currey) - https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/15799151-daily-rituals


    BOOK: The Omni-Americans (Albert Murray) - https://www.goodreads.com/en/book/show/174142


    PERSON: Trey Young (Atlanta Hawks) - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trae_Young


    PERSON: Lebron James - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/LeBron_James



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    • 46 min
    MMovies: (Relating to) The Namesake

    MMovies: (Relating to) The Namesake

    “It really tugs at your heart in the shared experience of growing up with dual cultures - and then recognizing all that our parents had gone through” // “...and at every moment that loneliness was pervasive.”
    MMovies returns to talk about important films that explain the minority experience for the rest of our majority ears. THE NAMESAKE is known by many as the 2003 book to decode most of your Indian friends. Adapted in 2006 as a family by Mira Nair - this is a work that many of us have a LOT of feelings about (esp if you’re a South Asian American boy between the ages of 25-45 years old). The film stars stars Kal Penn in the title role as Gogol Ganglani - alongside Zuleikha Robinson, Jacinda Barret as love interests, Sahira Nair as his sister, and Tabu + the late, great Irfan Khan who steal the film and bring us to tears as Gogol’s immigrant parents. The story follows the life of a young Bengali boy as he grows into adulthood across two cultures. But unlike the book, the film is not as much an interior reflection of Gogol, but a broader take on the family origins and experience - where his parents take just as much the center stage. While the book really spoke to many of us in our early 20s, you can’t help but watch the film in adulthood and see it from the perspective of the parents. Joining us today to talk about the Namesake is FrieMMd of the Pod, and our favorite Iranian Canadian by way of Ohio, Ida Abdalkhani. No tears this episode, just lots of the feels with this one.

    LEARN MORE & MENTIONS

    FILM: The Namesake (2006, Mira Nair):imdb.com/title/tt0433416/


    BOOK: The Namesake (2003, Jhumpa Lahiri): goodreads.com/book/show/33917.The_Namesake


    ARTICLE (2018): ‘Revisiting the Nameake’ pajiba.com/film_reviews/revisiting-mira-nair-and-kal-penns-the-namesake-after-crazy-rich-asians.php


    GUEST: Ida Abdalkhani - youtu.be/-HJG63EXCmw



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    • 40 min
    Korey Watari’s (Able To) Shine

    Korey Watari’s (Able To) Shine

    “Knowing what I know now and knowing our ethnicity, and where we come from, and what we know of our culture is what makes us unique, and what makes you powerful.”
    Korey Watari is a sansei, or third-generation Japanese American, born and raised in Los Angeles. She played basketball for a Japanese American league, graduated from the University of California, Riverside, and studied at the Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising. 
    Korey has worked in the animation and fashion industries for companies such as Disney and the Gap. I Am Able to Shine is her debut picture book and first collaboration with her husband, Pixar Artist and creator of Disney's Ellie series Mike Wu. In this gorgeously illustrated book, she shines a light on the AAPI experience, specifically the Japanese American experience, through the eyes of Keiko. The book was originally created for Korey & Mike’s two daughters and has made an impact for many little girls and boys worldwide. Korey joins us to talk about what inspired her to create this story and is excited to share Keiko's story with readers everywhere.
    LEARN ABOUT KOREY

    Website: Koreywatari.com

    LinkedIn: Korey Watari-Wu

    IG: @tinyteru, @wudog23

    TW: @tinyteru


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    • 1 hr 3 min
    Gender Queer: a must-read (banned) book

    Gender Queer: a must-read (banned) book

    Banned books, awkward adolescence, and pronouns.
    We recently read Maia Kobaba's GENDER QUEER: A MEMOIR on Raman’s other not-so-secret podcast Quarantined Comics. Created in 2014 - by Maia Kobabe, who uses e/em/eir pronouns - created a cathartic autobiography of Eir's experience with gender identity — from crushes to fan fic, from coming out to making out. What started as a series of Instagram posts to explain to the author's family what it means to be nonbinary and asexual, Gender Queer becomes so much more than a personal story: it is a useful and touching guide on gender identity—what it means and how to think about it—for advocates, friends, and humans everywhere.
    And then it became the most banned book in the country. https://www.nytimes.com/2022/05/01/books/maia-kobabe-gender-queer-book-ban.html
    What started as a simple, moving, explanation of gender identity - with the potential to create so much greater empathy and understanding for all of us got picked up by a parent on the wrong side of history, and a social media firestorm resulted, snowballing into headlines aroundthe country - with dozense of schools pulling it from library shelves around the country - from the Carolinas to Texas to Virginia - with many officials labeling it “pornographic.”
    But we're not here to talk about the controversy surrounding the book (we do, inevitably) — we're here to talk about the work itself. in light of all the other not so positive change happening in our society, it felt really important to read Gender Queer, and can't recommend this book enough. Warning, this is one of the rare episodes where Raman & Ryan agree on almost everything =)
    LEARN ABOUT
    GENDER QUEER (comic): goodreads.com/book/show/42837514-gender-queer

    Quarantined Comics (Raman + Ryan's podcast): qtdcomics.com
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    • 34 min

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5
122 Ratings

122 Ratings

Asian mom 4ever learning ,

Great heartfelt stories help me grow as a parent too

I love love love this podcast! Due to personal issues, I need to rest my eyes often preventing me to read books for leisure or down time. I’m a visual “learner” and never enjoy audiobooks and so I was a bit skeptical with podcast. But this podcast got me hooked! Wonderful guests sharing their perspectives and stories, some of which I can relate to as a female immigrant making into the mainstream America and other perspectives I’m intrigue to learn or never have time to digest or think through before. The bonding of Both hosts is genuinely real with deep relationships. Perhaps an unintended consequence - listening to these stories help me think deeper about what kind of parents I want to be for my two kids (one in college, one in high school). I’m hooked with this podcast, will go back and listen to the old episodes! Raman, yes, I’m hooked with Warriors now, thanks for recommending it! Great job, look forward to hear from this podcast! So true, this is “about all of you for all of us”!!!

MothEars ,

Terrific podcast

Best coverage on this subject and brilliant conversation!

stonefacephotog ,

Love your podcast

I’m loving your series on Muslims. Having a variety of perspective is important to show the world
the diversity in culture and the unity in belief. You guys do a great job of covering a variety of good people.

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