Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Class One - Prejudice Against Those of Japanese Ancestry Leads to Internment

The image above is from a website for the 2006 Pearl Harbor Workshop. The site states:

This initiative is a joint effort of the East-West Center, a nonprofit research and education institution established in 1960 by the U.S. Congress to promote understanding and improved relations between the United States and the Asia Pacific region; the National Park Service, which operates the USS Arizona Memorial; and the Arizona Memorial Museum Association, a nonprofit that supports the educational activities at the Arizona Memorial.

The site has a great bibliography here. One of the items which caught my eye was the Smithsonian's collection of Letters from the Japanese Internment.

Wikipedia has a fairly thorough writeup on Japanese American internment. Even if you're leery of accepting the info on that site as totally reliable, there are lots of good links to first person accounts, government sites, academic histories and other solid sources. (I happen to like Wikipedia, even if some folks sneer at it because it's user-generated.)

Another popular culture work that examined prejudice against Japanese Americans was the novel (and movie) Snow Falling on Cedars by David Guterson. There's a good study guide which expands on the issue of internment at a teacher's website, GradeSaver. EXCEPT it contends that there was no German or Italian internment. There was! It wasn't as extensive or confining as the Japanese internment, but it did happen. I met a woman last week who told me about her uncle, who was interned because he was Greek. So I'm now officially leery of all sources, including teacher sites. The truth is out there...but so are errors.

I found a site entitled WWII Violations of German American Civil Liberties by the US Government by Karen Ebel, the daughter of a German internee, Max Ebel. The Concord Monitor reported his story in an article entitled Germans, Too, Were Imprisoned in WW II.

The internment camps are shown on a map with their operating dates at History on the Net: World War Two Japanese Internment Camps in the USA. The site's author identifies herself as "Heather Wheeler an historian and former history teacher."

The Japanese American Internment appears to be the work of an amateur historian who has assembled an impressive bibliography of materials. It includes many images, including this one.


Wes said...

Don't forget this site:

Much, very much background info there.


Fantastic Forrest said...

Thanks for this, Wes. You've produced a wonderful site with many firsthand accounts and original source documents. Clearly, it is an ongoing labor of love for you, to honor those like your friend who served during the war.

custom term paper writing service said...

I'm glad there are people in the world, who are free from prejudice and are not afraid of saying their opinion.