Linda Cooper

Linda Cooper is a communications consultant and freelance writer with more than 30 years of experience as a public relations practitioner, U.S. Senate press aide and journalist. She holds a BA in journalism and political science from Mississippi University for Women. Cooper lives in Tennessee. Her best friend Brenda is a registered nurse at a medical research facility and lives nearby with her family.

Updated September 2017

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Nikkei Chronicles #7 — Nikkei Roots: Digging into Our Cultural Heritage

Embracing Our Nikkei Roots Via Southern Routes

If you’re a Japanese-American who lives on the East or West Coast, chances are, there are myriad ways to celebrate and nurture your Nikkei heritage with various festivals or celebrations, museum exhibits, trips to your local Japanese markets and restaurants, or through memberships in organizations such as the Japan Society or Japanese American Citizens League. But, what do you do if you grew up and live in the American South like my best friend Brenda and I? We are the daughters of Japanese mothers who married our Southern, U.S. soldier fathers in the aftermath of World War II ...

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food en ja es pt

Nikkei Chronicles #6 — Itadakimasu 2!: Another Taste of Nikkei Culture

Fried Chicken and Futomaki

In the documentary film Fall Down Seven Times, Get Up Eight: The Japanese War Brides, Hiroko Tolbert says, “I’m completely American.” Her daughter Kathryn counters, “You know, it’s funny to say how American you are, yet every morning you make miso soup.” Hiroko giggles, “Well, the food is a different story,” she says, and she and her daughter both laugh…and it is.

As we grow older, it seems, my best friend Brenda and I talk about food often. We are the daughters of Japanese war bride mothers and American fathers who were born and raised in the ...

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identity en ja es pt

Nikkei Chronicles #5 — Nikkei-go: The Language of Family, Community, and Culture

Yokoso Y’all

Thirty years ago, much to my delight, two events occurred which served to encapsulate my bicultural, hapa heritage. I am the daughter of a Japanese mother and Southern gentleman father, a career U.S. Army veteran who met and married my mother in Japan in the aftermath of World War II.

While I traveled the world with my parents when my dad was in the military, I did most of my growing up in a small suburb of Memphis, Tennessee, after my dad retired.

In 1986, the Memphis in May International Festival, in addition to showcasing great barbeque and music ...

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Nikkei Chronicles #2 — Nikkei+ ~ Stories of Mixed Language, Traditions, Generations & Race ~

The Space Between

My best friend Brenda noted recently that we and our parents are a dying generation. We are the daughters of U.S. soldier dads and Japanese moms. These soldiers fell in love with Japan, and our moms during their tours of duty in the aftermath of World War II, and brought their brides home to the U.S. My parents have both passed away, as well as Brenda’s dad. Her mom is now 80.

Brenda and I are only children and are more like sisters than friends. We say we are half-Japanese and half-Southern, as our dads were true ...

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