Ariel Takeda

Ariel Takeda is a professor with a degree in Education. A Nisei, Takeda was born and raised in southern Chile. For six years, he has been director and writer of the newsletter “Nikkei Informative” for the Japanese Beneficence Society. In 2002, he was the primary author of the chapter on Japanese migration in the Encyclopedia of Japanese Descendants in the Americas: An Illustrated History of the Nikkei (AltaMira Press). In 2006, Takeda published the book, Anecdotario histórico: Japoneses Chilenos (primera mitad del siglo XX). He continues to research and write about Japanese culture. He is currently working on “Nikkei Chilenos – Segunda Mitad del Siglo XX” and the novel “El Nikkei – A la Sombra del Samurai.”

Updated November 2012

food en ja es pt

Nikkei Chronicles #1 — ITADAKIMASU! A Taste of Nikkei Culture

Japanese Stoicism

In order to give you a better idea of who I am, we can start by saying that I am a product of southern Chile where I was born and raised and where I got my first teaching experience. Within those parameters—even today—Japanese culture was hard to come by, and, very little of it was practiced inside our home. My childhood was defined both by a domineering Chilean mother who ran the same tight ship that she had experienced growing up and a small town setting.

The power of this chilenidad was felt, curiously enough, at the table ...

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politics en es

Once again, Fujimori

Even when Alberto Fujimori is not the topic of conversation—and I haven’t changed my opinion of him one iota—it’s his daughter Keiko Fujimori who takes center stage, as she is one step closer to becoming president.

Through the usual dirty campaigns, we have shown the desperate efforts to condemn Keiko despite her flawless political trajectory since 2006, when she received the highest number of votes ever in Peru at the legislative level. Her family background was supposed to prejudice Keiko by blaming her for everything that had happened in the recent past. Such plans went by ...

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identity en es

Discover Nikkei at COPANI XV - Uruguay 2009

Chilean Nikkei Identity

(INITIAL NOTE: Assuming that the information contained in this text is not restricted to a particular group, we ask non-Chilean readers to replace the word “Chilean” with his or her own nationality, while accepting the few historical notes found therein.)

‘Nikkei’ concept apparently became applicable to Chile only after the first decades of the 20th century. It is a given that Japanese presence in our country dates back as early as 1875. The population census of that year registered the presence of two Japanese on Chilean territory, while by 1885 their number reaches 51; in 1895, however, that figure ...

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identity en es

Discover Nikkei at COPANI XV - Uruguay 2009

Reflections on "Being Nikkei"


When, beginning in 1869, groups of Japanese began leaving Japan in search of means of sustenance; it became necessary to identify them in some way. As a result, the concept ‘Nikkei’ is coined to identify those who, like the dekasegi [“work away from home”], stay temporarily away from Japan. But this concept is called into question when some of those who left fail to return to the Motherland, staying indefinitely in the receiving countries. The new horizons discovered overseas and their own circumstances have transformed those Japanese into immigrants. In this new scenario, the passing of ...

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community en es

Establishing Japanese Ancestry

When one sets out to trace back history with certain objectives in mind, evidence found here and there slowly begins to add up, taking form and giving support to certain suppositions of daring scholars who, in visionary fashion, create hypotheses bordering on fantasy. In this specific case, I'm referring to the presumed Japanese presence in Latin America long before the arrival of the European conquistadors.

In fact, they would have been in Brazil if we take into account records provided by the Jornal Nippo Brasil, dated April 20—26, 2000, in its report, "The Japanese were in Brazil before ...

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