Citizenship and identity

Growing up in a Japanese American family The reason for coming to Japan Sudden acceptance in Japanese society Tracing my family crest Disadvantages of looking Japanese Ring name: "Yamato Damashi" I’m American, but my home is Japan Citizenship and identity

Transcripts available in the following languages:

I don’t have any Japanese Americans friends that are here, but I do have friends from high school that are here. One is Konishiki. He was in the same high school as me—pretty much my senpai, my older which helps me out a lot. [He] gives me advice on a lot of things because he’s been here longer. He’s experienced the same thing. He’s changed his citizenship to Japanese. He has the same feeling as me. He’s American.

He tells me, “Oh you turn Japanese, you don’t have to pay”—something about taxes. The taxes are different for foreigners. And he says stuff like, “I got two passports now. When I go to Hawaii, I use my American passport. When I come to Japan, I use the Japanese one.” I don’t know how it works, but apparently to him, in his heart, he’s American—hasn’t changed. His name has changed to a Japanese name, but his friends and his family still call him Salevaa Atisanoe.

Date: October 14, 2003
Location: Saitama, Japan
Interviewer: Art Nomura
Contributed by: Art Nomura, Finding Home.

citizenship FindingHome identity

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