Nikkei in the Pacific Northwest

Japanese Americans and Japanese Canadians in the Twentieth Century

Louis Fiset and Gail M. Nomura

  • $27.00s paperback (9780295984612) Add to Cart
  • hardcover not available
  • Published: 2005
  • Subject Listing: Asian American Studies; History / Western History
  • Bibliographic information: 360 pp., 22 illus., 6 x 9 in.
  • Territorial rights: World Rights
  • Published with: Center for the Study of the Pacific Northwest
  • Series: Emil and Kathleen Sick Book Series in Western History and Biography
  • Contents

Challenging the notion that Nikkei individuals before and during World War II were helpless pawns manipulated by forces beyond their control, the diverse essays in this rich collection focus on the theme of resistance within Japanese American and Japanese Canadian communities to twentieth-century political, cultural, and legal discrimination. They illustrate how Nikkei groups were mobilized to fight discrimination through assertive legal challenges, community participation, skillful print publicity, and political and economic organization.

Comprised of all-new and original research, this is the first anthology to highlight the contributions and histories of Nikkei within the entire Pacific Northwest, including British Columbia.
Louis Fiset is affiliate associate professor of dentistry at the University of Washington and the author of Imprisoned Apart: The World War II Correspondence of an Issei Couple. Gail M. Nomura is assistant professor of American ethnic studies at the University of Washington. The other contributors include Noriko Asato, Michiko Midge Ayukawa, Roger Daniels, Gail Lee Dubrow, Andrea Geiger-Adams, Arthur A. Hansen, James A. Hirabayashi, Masumi Izumi, Eric L. Muller, Patricia E. Roy, and Robert C. Sims.

1. Introduction: Nikkei in the Pacific Northwest / Louis Fiset and Gail M. Nomura
2. Writing Racial Barriers into Law: Upholding B.C.'s Denial of the Vote to Its Japanese Canadian Citizens, Homma v. Cunningham, 1902 / Andrea Geiger-Adams
3. Becoming "Local" Japanese: Issei Adaptive Strategies on the Yakama Indian Reservation, 1906-1923 / Gail M. Nomura
4. Yasutaro Yamaga: Fraser Valley Berry Farmer, Community Leader, and Strategist / Michiko Midge Ayukawa
5. Americanization vs. Japanese Cultural Maintenance: Analyzing Seattle's Nihongo Tokuhon, 1920 / Noriko Asato
6. "The Nail That Sticks Up Gets Hit": The Architecture of Japanese American Identity in the Urban Environment, 1885-1942 / Gail Lee Dubrow
7. Four Hirabayashi Cousins: A Question of Identity / James A. Hirabayashi
8. The Minidoka Draft Resisters in a Federal Kangaroo Court / Eric L. Muller
9. Words Do Matter: A Note on Inappropriate Terminology and the Incarceration of the Japanese Americans / Roger Daniels
10. In the Matter of Iwao Matsushita: A Government Decision to Intern a Seattle Japanese Enemy Alien in World War II / Louis Fiset
11. The "Free Zone" Nikkei: Japanese Americans in Idaho and Eastern Oregon in World War II / Robert C. Sims
12. Lessons in Citizenship, 1945-1949: The Delayed Return of the Japanese to Canada's Pacific Coast / Patricia E. Roy
13. Peculiar Odyssey: Newsman Jimmie Omura's Removal from and Regeneration within Nikkei Society, History, and Memory / Arthur A. Hansen
14. Reclaiming and Reinventing "Powell Street": Reconstruction of the Japanese Canadian Community in Post-World War II Vancouver / Masumi Izumi


"The collection's solid scholarship and research moves the study of Japanese Americans 'outside the usual California-centered framework.' [It] could easily be used in classes dealing with the Northwest or Asian Americans. Each essay stands alone as a tribute to the vitality of Nikkei, such as Gordon Hirabayashi, and their descendants."
-Western Historical Quarterly

"A valuable resource on Nikkei history."
-Multicultural Review

"These essays are well researched, thoroughly documented, and provide readers new knowledge and insights on issues many know only superficially. The[y] are well written and make interesting reading for the public. They are also a good resource for students searching for information."
-Oregon Historical Quarterly

"[Nikkei in the Pacific Northwest] is a valuable addition to Japanese American history and should provoke specialists and nonspecialists alike to pay greater attention to region in discussions of ethnicity and immigration in the American West. Its essays also suggest exciting possibilities for further research- especially in such underexplored areas as Japanese-Native relations in Yakima and cross-border relations with Canada."
-Pacific Northwest Quarterly