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Interviews

Wayne Shigeto Yokoyama

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

Food growing up

My parents spoke Japanese to each other. My mother would speak English sentences with Japanese words in them. But they never spoke to us in Japanese and they never insisted that we learn Japanese. One reason, I think, is because didn't have very much money to go to a Japanese school. Also, my father thought, We're not going to go back to Japan and there's no reason for us to learn Japanese. So, the kind of Japanese traditions that we had were very few.

Of course, we ate rice…my father's from Hawaii, so the rice that we had was...we'd have rice with spaghetti, rice with everything, you know. So rice with beef stew, you name it. Every meal had rice and something. But I think that's a part of the Hawaiian diet. But as for anything more than just our diets and things, there wasn't much emphasis on Japan.


culture families Finding Home (film) food identity

Date: November 13, 2003

Location: Kyoto, Japan

Interviewer: Art Nomura

Contributed by: Art Nomura, Finding Home.

Interviewee Bio

Wayne Shigeto Yokoyama was born in Hawaii in 1948. His parents were both Kibei Nisei, but they never insisted that he learn Japanese. He moved to East Los Angeles, CA at the age of seven. He graduated from Roosevelt High School, then started at the University of California at Berkeley. After a year, however, he returned to Southern California and attended California State College in Los Angeles.

Mr. Yokoyama never thought about going to Japan until he was 31 years old. At the time, the Vietnam War was still going on. He did not want to go into the U.S. Army, so he decided to study Buddhism in Japan. After he earned his master’s degree, he worked for an English Buddhist magazine called Eastern Buddhist for over 20 years until the magazine was absorbed into the University system. Since then, he has been conducting research and trying to publish his work. He married a Japanese woman and has one daughter and one son. He lives in Kyoto. (November 13, 2003)

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

Grandmother's influence on decision to go to Japan

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

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Masakatsu Jaime Ashimine Oshiro
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Masakatsu Jaime Ashimine Oshiro

A Possible Path towards Happiness… (Spanish)

(1958-2014) Former Bolivian Ambassador to Japan

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Jean Hayashi Ariyoshi
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Jean Hayashi Ariyoshi

Possibility of being adopted by aunt

Former First Lady of Hawai'i

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Kazuo Funai
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Kazuo Funai

First work in America (Japanese)

(1900-2005) Issei businessman

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Masako Iino
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Masako Iino

Interest in Japanese migration studies (Japanese)

Tsuda College President, researcher of Nikkei history

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Masako Iino
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Masako Iino

What is Nikkei? (Japanese)

Tsuda College President, researcher of Nikkei history

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Masako Iino
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Masako Iino

Learning from Nikkei (Japanese)

Tsuda College President, researcher of Nikkei history

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James Hirabayashi
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James Hirabayashi

Nickname

(1926 - 2012) Scholar and professor of anthropology. Leader in the establishment of ethnic studies as an academic discipline

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James Hirabayashi
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James Hirabayashi

Little interaction with parents

(1926 - 2012) Scholar and professor of anthropology. Leader in the establishment of ethnic studies as an academic discipline

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James Hirabayashi
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James Hirabayashi

Gordon's parents' experience in prison

(1926 - 2012) Scholar and professor of anthropology. Leader in the establishment of ethnic studies as an academic discipline

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James Hirabayashi
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James Hirabayashi

Context affects meaning

(1926 - 2012) Scholar and professor of anthropology. Leader in the establishment of ethnic studies as an academic discipline

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James Hirabayashi
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James Hirabayashi

Testing assumptions of Japanese scholars

(1926 - 2012) Scholar and professor of anthropology. Leader in the establishment of ethnic studies as an academic discipline

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Steve Kaji
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Steve Kaji

FOB's

Hawaii born Nikkei living in Japan. English Teacher at YMCA.

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Venancio Shinki
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Venancio Shinki

Prejudice in Japanese school (Spanish)

(b. 1932-2016) Peruvian painter

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Mike Shinoda
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Mike Shinoda

Connecting to Japan

(b. 1977) Musician, Producer, Artist

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