Kimiko Medlock

Kimiko Medlock is a UX researcher currently living in Seattle, WA. She is a taiko player and occasionally a freelance writer focusing on the Japanese American experience during WWII. She holds an MA in modern Japanese history with a focus on pre-war Japanese liberation movements. 

Updated January 2021

media en

Ozōni Soup for the JA Soul

When Matthew Hashiguchi first began to record his grandmother’s story, he expected to produce one full-length documentary about Japanese Americans in the Midwest and Canada. He did not foresee the community’s overwhelming enthusiasm or the project’s resulting expansion to include an online storytelling platform that showcases JA history both before and after the war. He has named the platform Good Luck Soup.

Good Luck Soup has been a new type of endeavor for Hashiguchi, whose earlier photo and multimedia journalism projects never dealt with the Japanese American experience. The omittance was a personal choice. Even after graduating ...

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culture en

A Poet, a Mystery Novelist, and Writing in Japanese America

The Japanese American experience is rarely tackled in mainstream literature. In 2015, Asian protagonists are still conspicuously absent from novels, missing in popular films, and seldom cast in leading theater roles. But we are not invisible. Asian American authors and artists in the past century have taken representation into their own hands, voicing their own life experiences through creative arts.

On September 19, the Japanese American National Museum will feature two such Asian American artists in an event titled Writing Little Tokyo in Crime and Rhyme. Poet Amy Uyematsu and novelist Naomi Hirahara will read from their most recent works ...

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TAIKOPROJECT in Collaboration with Mexican Folk/Rockers

TAIKOPROJECT is at it again. The fast-paced, world-class LA taiko group has recently finished a nationwide tour. And now, fresh off the April release of their CD, Our Many Sides, they are busy with a new project. On September 18-19, 2015, they will perform an integrated concert with the Chicano rock band Quetzal at 8 p.m. at the Tateuchi Democracy Forum at the National Center for the Preservation of Democracy (across the courtyard from the main Japanese American National Museum building).

This will be TAIKOPROJECT’s second collaboration with the Grammy-winning Quetzal. The two groups first fused Japanese American ...

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identity en ja es pt

Nikkei Chronicles #4 — Nikkei Family: Memories, Traditions, and Values

Don’t Worry Be Hapa

My sisters and I all have the same dry humor and vertically conservative height, but that’s about where our obvious similarities end. We all have the same Sansei Okinawan mother and Southern-ish Florida father, but we’re often told that we don’t look alike. I might describe our general connection growing up with our “Japanese-ness” as tenuous at best. We ate rice with every meal and never failed to bring gifts to friends’ houses. But then we also heard Pidgin and standard English when we visited extended family. Not a Japanese speaker in sight. And we love our ...

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culture en

East Coasters on the Taiko Scene

Discover Nikkei readers may know taiko as an originally Japanese art, heard on obon nights as grandmothers encourage the community to join in a circular dance. Or perhaps they know it in its post-WWII performance variety. The famed Japanese ensemble taiko group Kodo, for example, tours around the world and brings their rhythms and notions of Japanese culture with them wherever they go…or perhaps readers have never heard of taiko.

Japanese drumming has been playing a unifying role in West Coast US Nikkei communities since its post-war migration to North America (see the Discover Nikkei interview with Seiichi Tanaka ...

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