Masayuki Fukasawa

Born on November 22, 1965, in Numazu City, Shizuoka Prefecture. In 1992, he went to Brazil for the first time and worked as an intern at Paulista Shimbun (Japanese newspaper). In 1995, he went back to Japan, worked with Brazilians at a factory in Oizumi-machi, Gunma Prefecture and received the Ushio Nonfiction Award in 1999 for his reporting there, which was published by Ushio Publishing, titled Parallel World. In 1999, he went to Brazil again. Since 2001, he has been working at Nikkey Shimbun and assumed the position of Editor in 2004.

Updated January 2009

food en ja es pt

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

Hello Again Feijoada

“I enjoyed it for the first time in three years.” In June, 2005, Makoto Oka, (age 66 at the time) chairperson of Brazil Okayama Kenjinkai (prefectural association) commented on the feijoada, a major Brazilian dish, with a face that showed his getting over some past woe.

As a matter of fact, Oka almost died from a burn on his body when he turned over a giant pot of feijoada at the kenjinkai hall in the past.

Feijoada, a local cuisine representative of Brazil, is a dish that is cooked with black beans stewed with ingredients such as cow ears and ...

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sports en ja es pt

Tetsuo Okamoto Swam to Show His “Japanese Spirit”—He Was One of Three Athletes of Japanese Ethnicity Representing Three Countries That Dominated the Podium of the 1,500-meter Freestyle Swimming at the Helsinki Olympic Games

Just two months away from the Rio Olympic Games, let us take a moment here. Do you know that once in the history of the Olympic Games, one podium was dominated by three athletes, all from different countries but of the same Japanese ethnicity? In the 1952 Helsinki Olympic Games, the podium for the 1,500-meter freestyle in swimming was taken by Ford Konno, a Japanese American from Hawaii who took first place, Shiro Hashizume from Japan who took second place, and Tetsuo Okamoto, a Japanese Brazilian who took third place. In Brazil, not only was Okamoto a hero who ...

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migration en ja es pt

Immigration – Missing Link in Japanese History – Why Are There So Many Okinawan Immigrants? - Part 2

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Bringing Their Culture in Mass Immigration

“You can see the Okinawa of the Meiji era in Brazil”—local papers in Okinawa often use this line. This is because people brought their customs and language to Brazil in mass immigration.

Even to this day, Uchinaaguchi (the Okinawan language) is used at home among many families. In Okinawan-hosted events, you would see “Uchinaaguchi plays,” and the “Uchinaaguchi speech contest” is held every year. Also, in the Okinawan forum which took place in May this year, there was a heating debate on the theme of “Uchinaaguchi Is Our True Treasure ...

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migration en ja es pt

Immigration – Missing Link in Japanese History – Why Are There So Many Okinawan Immigrants? - Part 1

In Japan, Okinawans have been in conflict with their government over the US base relocation. The word “immigration” may be one of the key words to understanding their unique way of thinking. In Japanese history, there is a missing link—the history of immigration—and perhaps the great majority of people are not even aware of the fact that it is missing from their history. For the Japanese living in Japan, things that happen at the sites of immigration are out of the realm of their concern and not written or taught as part of contemporary history. However, they make ...

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community en ja es pt

Prison Island Anchieta: The Site of Numerous Tragedies—“Winning or Losing Feud” Resulted in Imprisonment of 170 People; Water Source Named Bica Shindo Renmei

A federal prison was built on Alcatraz Island in California, in the United States, which became known as the impossible-to-break “prison island” and was later featured in the movie Escape from Alcatraz (made in 1979 and directed by Don Siegel) starring Clint Eastwood. There is in fact a Brazilian version of the facility on Anchieta Island located on the Northeastern coast of Sao Paulo, which holds the hidden history of 170 imprisoned Japanese immigrants in the immediate aftermath of the war. In commemoration of the Japanese, a water source near the then prison was named “Bica (spout) Shindo Renmei” in ...

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