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Interviews

Wayne Shigeto Yokoyama

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

Being on the outside

It was interesting to be in a place where all these Japanese were because all these Japanese names on the stores, sometimes written in English and then…yeah it was very interesting. And then…well, let’s say everybody was about the same height as I was in those days. Now that’s changed. I suppose I didn’t feel out of place. At the same time, I’m not really Japanese. So I’m not going to try to fit into Japanese society as a Japanese. My background is different, my language is different, my culture, my sense of values…so some things are difficult to change. Although I found that this is an interesting country. But there’s a great difference between…I could never really be on the inside track in this kind of society. So I’m always on the outside. Just like I was at the Buddhist Journal. I was never really accepted in as a member. So I was always on the outside. I kind of like it. I’m much freer because I have no real obligations. I don’t have to answer for a lot of things because I am on the outside.


culture Finding Home (film) 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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Enson Inoue
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Enson Inoue

I’m American, but my home is Japan

(b. 1967) Hawai`i-born professional fighter in Japan

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Vince Ota
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Vince Ota

Being a Japanese American in Japan

Japanese American Creative designer living in Japan

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

Buddhism in America and Japan

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

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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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Pam Kaji
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Pam Kaji

Experiences in Japan and its influence

Hawaii born Nikkei living in Japan with her family.

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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

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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