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The reason to stay in Japan after his third year

Now, the reason I decided to stay after my third year is because, like you said, it was cumulative. I had been out here for a while, but there was work opportunities out here. I found that I wasn’t very attracted to the idea of going back to the States and trying to jump back into my career again. It’s easier to start something new out here. At that time, there were a lot of opportunities for foreign expats. So that was part of it. The other part of it is that I’ve grown kind of a distaste of America at this point. It had started a long time ago, even before I had left—just being in Los Angeles and seeing a lot of political hypocrisy and stuff. Having been in Japan and being able to see the first Iraq war, the first Gulf war, from an outside perspective, that just sold me on that fact that it’s not a place that I want to be anymore.


Finding Home (film) immigration Japan migration

Date: September 12, 2003

Location: Tokyo, Japan

Interviewer: Art Nomura

Contributed by: Art Nomura, Finding Home.

Interviewee Bio

Vince Ota, (Sansei on his mother’s side, Yonsei on his father’s), was born in New Hampshire. From there, he and his family lived in several cities throughout the United States and also lived in London before finally settling in Gaithersburg, Maryland. Growing up in a small town in Maryland, Vince did not have much contact with other Asian Americans, except during the summers he spent in Los Angeles with relatives. He describes his upbringing as “pretty White American.” Vince eventually moved to southern California where he attended community college and the California Institute of the Arts. He worked as a creative designer and lived in Los Angeles for seven years until moving to Japan. Vince has lived in Japan since 1996 and plans to stay. At the time of the interview, he was working as a creative designer. (September 12, 2003)

Harunori Oda
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Harunori Oda

Life Philosophy

(1927-2016) Shin-Issei businessman

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Hachiro Ohtomo
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Hachiro Ohtomo

Facing discrimination in America (Japanese)

(b. 1936) Shin-issei welding business owner

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Takeo Uesugi
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Takeo Uesugi

His father urged him to go to the US

(1940-2016) Issei Landscape Architect

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Terumi Hisamatsu Calloway
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Terumi Hisamatsu Calloway

Regret (Japanese)

(b. 1937) A war bride from Yokohama

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Hachiro Ohtomo
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Hachiro Ohtomo

My daughter couldn’t fit in Japan, so I decided to go back to America (Japanese)

(b. 1936) Shin-issei welding business owner

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Akira Takashio
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Akira Takashio

Tough life at boarding house (Japanese)

Shin Issei – owner of izakaya (Japanese-style tavern) and kappo (small Japanese diner) restaurant, Honda-Ya

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Tom Yuki
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Tom Yuki

His family's migration to Salinas, California

(b. 1935) Sansei businessman.

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Kishi Bashi
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Kishi Bashi

His Shin-Issei parents

(b. 1975) Musician, composer, and songwriter

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Michelle Yamashiro
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Michelle Yamashiro

General reasons why people left Japan for Peru

Okinawan American whose parents are from Peru.

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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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Mitsuye Yamada
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Mitsuye Yamada

Her mother came to the U.S. with a group of picture brides

(b. 1923) Japanese American poet, activist

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Mitsuye Yamada
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Mitsuye Yamada

Her father bought her mother American clothes after she arrived from Japan

(b. 1923) Japanese American poet, activist

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Howard Kakita
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Howard Kakita

Reuniting with parents in America

(b. 1938) Japanese American. Hiroshima atomic bomb survivor

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Howard Kakita
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Howard Kakita

His views on nuclear weapons

(b. 1938) Japanese American. Hiroshima atomic bomb survivor

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Kazumu Naganuma
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Kazumu Naganuma

Checking in with Immigration once a month

(b. 1942) Japanese Peruvian incarcerated in Crystal City

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