Altered Lives, Enduring Community
Japanese Americans Remember Their World War II Incarceration
Publication Year: 2004
Published by: University of Washington Press
This book is the culmination of the efforts of a team of individuals. Tom Ikeda, the director of Densho: The Japanese American Legacy Project, has supported the data collection from the Project's inception. He provided leadership and committed resources at numerous critical junctures. Becky Fukuda identified and selected the pool of quotes from Densho visual...
Soon after Japanese fighter-bombers shocked the nation with their crippling attack on U.S. naval ships in Pearl Harbor, some 11O,OOO persons of Japanese ancestry, the majority of whom were American citizens, were forcibly removed from their Pacific Coast homes and incarcerated in desolate camps in the interior of the country. Here they were held, on...
2. The Pre-World War II Community
In this second chapter, we give the reader a sense of the world of our Nisei respondents prior to the turmoil of World War II. Along with a description of the Densho survey respondents and information about their prewar lives, this sets the stage for our main focus, the reactions of former incarcerees to their exclusion and detention. Since the community in which our...
3. The Incarceration
Yeah, if you're a prisoner in a concentration camp at seven years old, you think everybody is. I mean, you don't know your circumstances are so unusual. You have no idea to compare with anyone else's life so you just assume that this is life. No one tells you any different. You get an undertone of something is wrong. I know right out of camp, a librarian...
4. Military Service and Resistance
By the eve of World War II, a significant number of older Nisei were becoming eligible for military service. With the outbreak of hostilities in Europe, many were drawn into the armed forces; some were drafted into the U.S. Army, while others volunteered. A small number were accepted for commissioning in the Army through the Reserve Officer Training...
After months or even years of living under the abnormal social and physical conditions of the camps, how did the former incarcerees reestablish themselves in the world outside? This difficult period of returning and readapting to American society is usually labeled "resettlement." The War Relocation Authority (WRA) first used this term in 1942 when it began to...
6. Marriage and Family Formation
As noted in chapter 2, the family was the key social unit for members of the prewar Japanese American community. However. even before the advent of World War II, the Japanese American family was headed toward a major transformation. The primary reasons for this were the widening linguistic, cultural. and political gulfs that were becoming increasingly evident...
7. Occupational Patterns
As we have seen in previous chapters, the momentous events associated with the mass removal and its aftermath created major discontinuities in the life-course trajectories of our Seattle-area Nisei respondents. In this chapter we explore how these shifts may have impacted the former incarcerees with respect to a key lifestyle determinant in advanced capitalist...
8. Religion and Making Sense of the Incarceration
Since religious beliefs and practices are often invoked during stressful events, we were interested in whether they played a role in how the Densho respondents reacted to the incarceration. In this chapter, we explore the effects that the two major, broad religious orientations found in the Japanese American community, Buddhism and Protestantism, may have had on how our...
9. Looking Back
As we looked back over our study's findings, one of the themes that continually emerged as central to understanding the lives of the former incarcerees was that of community. When we began this research. we approached our task as an investigation of how a calamitous event may have altered the life courses and worldviews of members of a specific ethnic...
Publication Year: 2004
OCLC Number: 778885820
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