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The French Connection: What Newspapers in Wartime France Said About Japanese Americans

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The story of the wartime incarceration of Japanese Americans is not only a part of U.S. history, but also a part of global history. As many Issei remained in touch with families in Japan, news of the wartime incarceration travelled across the Pacific, and even became a propaganda tool in …

The Curious Case of Ronald Lane Latimer: A Born-Again Buddhist - Part 2

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The Curious Case of Ronald Lane Latimer: A Born-Again Buddhist - Part 1

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Numerous authors have previously uncovered the stories of the outside supporters who vocalized their support for Japanese American communities amidst the wave of anti-Japanese vitriol on the West Coast in early 1942. Although the community of supporters ranged from leftist activists to New Deal idealists, it was a small minority …

Father Thomas Takahashi – A Man of One Spirit in Two Worlds

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Toge Fujihira: Master Photographer and World Traveler - Part 2

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Toge Fujihira: Master Photographer and World Traveler - Part 1

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Toge Fujihira (whose family name was sometimes reported as Fujihara) left the West Coast in the years before World War II and settled in New York, where he distinguished himself as a photographer and documentary filmmaker. During the postwar era, he established himself as a professional cameraman and photographer, capturing …

Clement Boesflug: Catholic Priest and JACL Chaplain

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Among the Maryknoll Catholic clergy who worked with Japanese Americans, many individuals, including Fathers Hugh Lavery and Leopold Tibesar, served as spiritual teachers and advocates on behalf of Japanese communities. However, few interacted with their parishioners or participated in community politics as much as Father Clement Boesflug. Known commonly as “Father …

The N-Word and the Japanese American Press

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In the wide world of American racial epithets, one word seems to stand apart as uniquely hateful and wounding: the term euphemized as the “N-word.” Applied to African Americans, it is a corruption of the term Negro—a term that has gone through its own complex history. Like the Nazi swastika, …

The Other Side of Doho: Kikue Ukai, Groundbreaking Deaf Writer and Editor

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In my previous article on Shuji Fujii, I highlighted his work as a writer, editor, and labor activist. Although Fujii ran the radical Japanese community newspaper Doho for most of its existence, he could not have done so without the help of his wife, Kikue. A gifted writer and literary …

Shuji Fujii and the Hidden Lives of Japanese American Communists

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One of the more understudied topics in Japanese American political history is the presence of communists among Nisei intellectuals. Indeed, the late Asian American scholar and activist Yuji Ichioka called upon scholars to examine the complex network of Japanese American leftists among the immigrant communities. As with Robin Kelley’s book …

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