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Views on Japanese Youth (Japanese)

(Japanese) Living in the gap between my homeland Japan and Paraguay, the thing that most strikes me is the current lifestyle of Japanese youth. In order for them to carry on the legacy of the beautiful country and its traditional customs, the youth of today should familiarize themselves with foreign countries. In doing so, they may be able to reflect back on their own country and understand the advantages of living in Japan. The youth, who study abroad and look to adopt customs from foreign countries which they believe will benefit Japan, will be the ones who will lead the population into the future and participate in the rebuilding of society.

The Tokyo of today is much different from the Tokyo I remember when I was 14. There is this sort of coldness, well that’s the sort of impression I have. I don’t want to be rude, but when I see young people in Japan, many look very irresponsible to me. I just have this uneasy feeling about the future of society, being that this is my homeland.


communities identity Japan Paraguay youth

Date: March 24, 2009

Location: Tokyo, Japan

Interviewer: Alberto Matsumoto

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

Interviewee Bio

Isao Taoka was born in 1943 in the Miyoshi District of Tokushima Prefecture. At the age of 14, he immigrated to the La Paz Colony in Paraguay. While engaging in agriculture, Mr. Taoka took on several community positions such as the chair of the Cooperativa La Paz Agrícola (Agriculture Union of La Paz), the chairman of the Central Cooperativa Nikkei del Paraguay (Central Nikkei Agriculture Union in Paraguay), and the supervisor as well as the director for the Federación de Cooperativa de Producción del Paraguay (Agriculture Union Federation of Paraguay). In 1987, he received the third class of the Paraguay Merit of Service Award. Between 1992 and 1996, and again from 2002 to 2003, Mr. Taoka served as the mayor of La Paz. In 2004, he became the first immigrant born in Japan to be inaugurated as an ambassador to Japan. Mr. Taoka served this position until October of 2009. (December 2009)

Ann K. Nakamura
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Ann K. Nakamura

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Sansei from Hawaii living in Japan. Teacher and businesswoman.

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Robert (Bob) Kiyoshi Okasaki
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Robert (Bob) Kiyoshi Okasaki

Japanese influence growing up

(b.1942) Japanese American ceramist, who has lived in Japan for over 30 years.

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PJ Hirabayashi
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PJ Hirabayashi

Diverse membership in San Jose Taiko

Co-founder and creative director of San Jose Taiko

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Robert (Bob) Kiyoshi Okasaki
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Robert (Bob) Kiyoshi Okasaki

Looking at your country from the outside

(b.1942) Japanese American ceramist, who has lived in Japan for over 30 years.

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Robert (Bob) Kiyoshi Okasaki
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Robert (Bob) Kiyoshi Okasaki

Wife's family in Japan

(b.1942) Japanese American ceramist, who has lived in Japan for over 30 years.

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Yukio Takeshita
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Yukio Takeshita

Lack of notion of citizenship in Japan

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Byron Glaser
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Byron Glaser

Growing up in a Japanese American community

Illustrator and designer

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Jane Aiko Yamano
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Jane Aiko Yamano

Lack of language skills

(b.1964) California-born business woman in Japan. A successor of her late grandmother, who started a beauty business in Japan.

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Jane Aiko Yamano
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Jane Aiko Yamano

Preserving traditional Japanese culture

(b.1964) California-born business woman in Japan. A successor of her late grandmother, who started a beauty business in Japan.

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Jane Aiko Yamano
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Jane Aiko Yamano

Having patience in Japan, being both

(b.1964) California-born business woman in Japan. A successor of her late grandmother, who started a beauty business in Japan.

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Byron Glaser
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Byron Glaser

Supporting art because it's essential

Illustrator and designer

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Wayne Shigeto Yokoyama
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Wayne Shigeto Yokoyama

Being on the outside

(b.1948) Nikkei from Southern California living in Japan.

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Wayne Shigeto Yokoyama
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Wayne Shigeto Yokoyama

Working at the magazine

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Wally Kaname Yonamine
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Wally Kaname Yonamine

His parents' experience with Japanese resistance toward intermarriage with Okinawans

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Wally Kaname Yonamine
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Wally Kaname Yonamine

Working in cane fields as teenager, and how it helped in his athletic training (Japanese)

(b.1925) Nisei of Okinawan descent. Had a 38-year career in Japan as a baseball player, coach, scout, and manager.

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