Fredrick Cloyd

Fredrick Douglas Kakinami Cloyd was born in Japan shortly after the U.S. Occupation officially ended. His African-American/Cherokee father was an occupation soldier in Korea and Japan while Fredrick’s mother—a Japanese/Chinese/Austro-Hungarian girl of the war-ruins was from an elite nationalist family in Japan. Transnational racisms and sexisms during the rise of U.S. and Japanese global stature presents a foundation through which Fredrick weaves his stories of memory and family history.

He received a masters degree from a postcolonial/feminist-oriented social cultural anthropology program at the California Institute of Integral Studies in San Francisco. He feeds his love of Asian and Latin foods, coffee, TV shows, music, and steam trains while working on his first interstitial auto-ethnography entitled: “Dream of the Water Children, dream of the water children.”

Updated May 2011

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Excerpts from "Dream of the water children, dream of the water children"

Part 6: Constant King [2 of 2]

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How, then, are manhood, fatherhood and hierarchies constructed in this? It’s not just one thing.

You’re too young to remember, I think. One time I was giving you a bath. It was at our house in Ōme. Your Dad came to Japan to see how we were doing, a year after he was here for your birth. We were still waiting for the American government to let us marry. Until then, your father could visit us only once a year.

I was putting you in the bath and your father ...

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Excerpts from "Dream of the water children, dream of the water children"

Part 6: Constant King [1 of 2]

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The Constant King 1964

Mama and Dad and myself are at the dinner table. It was really the first full year ever, that Dad sat at the dinner table with Mama and I for a meal or two. In the past, he had been out of the country where Mama and me lived. When I was born it wasn’t good that he was with us, according to the military. So he was in America and Korea. In America, after only a couple of weeks, he was to go to the battlefields of Vietnam. In Hawaii ...

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Excerpts from "Dream of the water children, dream of the water children"

Part 5: Monsters

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Monsters 1950    Shōwa Year 25

化け物    昭和25年

From a leaflet from the U.S. armed forces made available to the occupation soldiers during the strongest period of attempting to implement the anti-fraternization policy which tried to discourage relations between Japanese women and occupation personnel:

“[Japanese women] have been taught to hate you. They do as their men tell them, and many of them have been told to kill you. Sex is one of the oldest and most effective weapons in history. The Geisha girl knows how to wield it charmingly. She may entice you ...

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Excerpts from "Dream of the water children, dream of the water children"

Part 4: Neighbors/Next door

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Neighbors/Next door, Mama around 1940

となり、昭和15年ごろ

“These expressions are extremely crude and regional, and have a rustic air; middle-class Tokyo residents would laugh at their provincial quaintness.”
     —Dorinne Kondo1

We were obviously not 江戸っ子 Edokko.2 People reminded us that we were foreign and special, even though we were Japanese.

Older sister spoke louder than other girls around and liked to be around the girls who were always in trouble at school and were poor and rough. I was too young to know one way or another, what I ...

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Excerpts from "Dream of the water children, dream of the water children"

Part 3: Watermelon Seeds [2 of 2]

Read “Part 3: Watermelon Seeds [1 of 2]” >>

I am still an only-child. But now my only child identity was not the same as just a moment before. I was born alone but because a sister died. Fragments of unknowns become apparent. I then felt relieved. Some things fell into a certain logical reasoning—or perhaps it was a certain logic that offered comfort. I was an only child, but now I reasoned that a protector-twin had been watching over me, saving me from the few near-death experiences I’ve had. This could also explain the intense waves of loneliness ...

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