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https://www.discovernikkei.org/en/interviews/clips/1120/

An Opportunity to Learn more Japanese (Japanese)

In general, my parents only used Japanese at home, then once I married Amano it was Japanese more and more. I worked with him because he couldn’t really understand what he was reading in Spanish and English unless he put a lot of time and effort into reading it. He wasn’t that good at it, so he asked Mr. Okamoto if you know a young person who could help him to read.

I can't speak English or Japanese, but for some reason Okamoto-san chose me. He said he was desperate (laughs). I had never done a job like that before, having just graduated from girl's school. I didn't even study Japanese well enough in elementary school. What with the war and all, I didn't study at all. After that, people who may have been older than me had a home economics girl’s school. Those people were really good. But I’m all over the place. But at home we spoke Japanese, and once I married Amano we spoke in Japanese. We also had a lot of visitors from Japan. But I haven’t studied at all.

I*: So, which is more comfortable? Are you more at ease with Japanese than with Spanish? Which is more comfortable?

Well, it’s really bad manners, but it's better to use both. Hm, I wonder about that. I don’t really know, myself (laughs). I can’t speak either of them.

* "I" indicates an interviewer (Ann Kaneko).


generations languages Nisei Peru

Date: April 18, 2007

Location: Lima, Peru

Interviewer: Ann Kaneko

Contributed by: Watase Media Arts Center, Japanese American National Museum

Interviewee Bio

Miyoko Amano (nee: Watanabe) is a Nikkei Nisei born in Lima, Peru. In 1954, she married Yoshitaro Amano, a businessman and a researcher of the Andes Civilization. Taking over the vision of her late husband, she is currently the President of Amano Museum—established from the Yoshitaro’s private collection of artifacts—renowned for its extensive research into the Cancay Culture. (October 2009)

Hiroshi Sakane
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Hiroshi Sakane

The Nikkei community that didn't support Former President Fujimori's election (Japanese)

(b. 1948) Executive Director of Amano Museum

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Hiroshi Sakane
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Hiroshi Sakane

The differences in attitude of pre-war and post war in terms of the President Fujimori presidency (Japanese)

(b. 1948) Executive Director of Amano Museum

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Hiroshi Sakane
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Hiroshi Sakane

Disseminating the excellence of Japan to the world through the Amano Museum (Japanese)

(b. 1948) Executive Director of Amano Museum

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Jimmy Murakami
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Jimmy Murakami

Teaching English in Japan

(1933 – 2014) Japanese American animator

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Willie Ito
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Willie Ito

Father’s Optimism

(b. 1934) Award-winning Disney animation artist who was incarcerated at Topaz during WWII

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Michelle Yamashiro
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Michelle Yamashiro

Working together in Okinawa using three languages

Okinawan American whose parents are from Peru.

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Fumiko Hachiya Wasserman
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Fumiko Hachiya Wasserman

Mother founded Japanese language school in neighbors’ backyard

Sansei judge for the Superior Court of Los Angeles County in California

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Holly J. Fujie
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Holly J. Fujie

Her grandfather was pressured to teach Japanese

Sansei judge on the Superior Court of Los Angeles County in California

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