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Living as Migrants in a Place That Was Once Home: The Nisei, the US Bases, and Okinawan Society


Born in Okinawa of Okinawan mothers and Filipino fathers, many Nisei who were brought up in the Philippines have returned to Okinawa as adults to seek economic mobility, acquire Japanese citizenship, and search for part of their roots. However, their mixed heritage, lack of proficiency in the Japanese language, and reliance on the US military bases for their livelihood put them in an ambivalent position in Okinawan society. Concerning the controversial US presence in Okinawa, the Nisei have ambivalent sentiments, which reflect their own uncertain position in Okinawan society, but this ambivalence also mirrors the conflicted views of other Okinawans.

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