Scholars showcase future of diverse Nikkei community

PAN-JAPAN: The International Journal of the Japanese Diaspora: Special Issue: CONJECTURING COMMUNITIES: Ebbs and Flows of Japanese America Edited by Lane Ryo Hirabayashi (Normal, Ill.: Illinois State University, 2016, $12.50; Spring/Fall 2016: Volume 12, Numbers 1 & 2, 189 pp., paperback). To purchase, write to: PAN-JAPAN (Vol. 12, No. 1 & 2), Subscriptions, Anthropology 4640, […]

A journey to say goodbye in Tohoku

When the Dead Pause and the Japanese Say Goodbye By Marie Mutsuki Mocket (New York: W.W. Norton & Company Inc., 2016, 336 pp., $16.95, paperback) “Perhaps it is possible, then, to see through more than one set of eyes …” Expected to speak and behave as a Japanese once she boarded the plane from America, […]

Book tackles all-things JA

BEING JAPANESE AMERICAN, A JA SOURCEBOOK FOR NIKKEI, HAPA … & THEIR FRIENDS By Gil Asakawa (Berkeley, Calif.: Stone Bridge Press, second edition, 2015, 192 pages, $18.95, paperback) This is a great sourcebook for all things Japanese American. In addition to being a good reference, it likely will make the reader think about what being […]

Okinawa-born Dave Roberts introduced as first minority manager of L.A. Dodgers

LOS ANGELES — Well into a 35-minute press conference announcing his arrival as the 10th manager of the Los Angeles Dodgers, Dave Roberts was thrown a curveball. Flanked by the men who hired him  — Los Angeles General Manager Farhan Zaidi and President of Baseball Operations Andrew Friedman  — Roberts, who was born in Okinawa […]

Not Japanese Enough? Miss Universe Japan looks to fight prejudice

TOKYO — At first glance, Ariana Miyamoto might not be instantly recognized as a Japanese woman. But the 21-year-old model and former bartender — who in March became the first mixed-race contestant to be crowned “Miss Universe Japan” — was born and raised in Japan, and Japanese is her native language. But because of her […]

Academy Awards honors Asians

Tom Cross, who is Vietnamese American, received an Oscar for his film editing on “Whiplash,” the story of a young drummer at a cut-throat music conservatory. HOLLYWOOD, Calif. — The 2015 Academy Awards, held Feb. 22 at Hollywood, Calif.’s Dolby Theater, included a few wins for Asians in film and animation. Disney’s “Big Hero 6” […]

A foreigner in everyone’s eyes

GAIJIN: AMERICAN PRISONER OF WAR By Matt Faulkner (New York: Disney • Hyperion Books, 2014, 144 pp., $19.99, hardcover)   People of Japanese descent on the West Coast were, without regard to nationality, rounded up and placed in American concentration camps during World War II. The story is well known. Perhaps lesser known are the […]

Mixed race leukemia patient recovering at home

After months of hospital treatments and a second transplant, 8-year-old leukemia patient Baylor Nihei Fredrickson has been released from the hospital and returned home on Oct. 31. Baylor’s mother, Shari Nihei Fredrickson, said he continues to recover at home while on IV fluids and more than 15 medications. “I think one of the things he’s […]

Nikkei teen, said to be Disney’s first biracial lead character, stars in ‘Big Hero 6’

Ryan Potter provides the voice of Hiro Hamada, a young genius-turned-superhero in Disney’s latest animated film “Big Hero 6.” The 19-year-old Potter, whose father is Japanese and mother is Caucasian, plays what he describes as the first biracial main protagonist of a Disney film. Born in Portland, Ore., Potter moved to Tokyo a few months after […]

Postwar adoptees from Japan make connections, share stories in U.S.

LOS ANGELES — Kei LaFleur has a story behind the name she grew up with, and she said that story has given her much to be thankful for. Born in the fall of 1954 to, she believes, a Japanese mother and American father, she was named Keiko and put in the care of the Elizabeth […]

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