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The Japanese American internment - Research Paper Example

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The attack on Pearl Harbor worsened the racial dislike towards the Japanese-Americans that dated back to the late nineteenth century. Franklin Delano…
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The Japanese American internment
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The Japanese American internment

Download file to see previous pages... The government targeted the Japanese Americans, both aliens and residents, without ever warning them specifically. The main reason given for the internment was that the people of Japanese descent living in Hawaii, through the provision of intelligence, had aided the enemy in attacking the Pearl Harbor. In fact, two-thirds of the Japanese-Americans interned were American citizens, mostly children and young adults. Those internees who proved to be loyal to the US were released and by 1946, and all the internment camps were closed, but the psychological effects could not be undone (Steven and Bernie 2).
The experience the Nisei, the second generation of the Japanese Americans, had in the internment camps led them to question their identity and citizenship. Research shows that “the camp experience was paradoxical” (Suyemoto 6). The camps were viewed as a way of enhancing the acculturation of the Japanese Americans, but the internees only interacted with their fellow Nisei. The Nisei relied on Japanese values, which included endurance during difficult situations and stoicism in the face of adversity, and this helped them to cope with the internment experience. After the release of the Nisei, they tried their best to avoid attracting any negative attention to themselves by attempting to present their identity as Americans. One Nisei has said “By trying to prove we were 110 percent American, we hoped to be accepted” (Suyemoto 6). The race-related trauma experienced during the internment prompted the Nisei to suppress their Japanese cultural heritage and instead focus on portraying American values. Subsequently, they passed on the same sentiments to their Sansei children, who passed the same to the current Gosei and Yonsei generation (Nagata 125).The impact of the race-related trauma experienced during the internment was then, transgenerational.
The Sansei children often heard their parents mention the “camp” in ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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