Nikkei Chronicles #10—Nikkei Generations: Connecting Families & Communities

The theme of the 10th edition of Nikkei Chronicles—Nikkei Generations: Connecting Families & Communities—takes a look at intergenerational relationships in Nikkei communities around the world, with a particular focus on the emerging younger generations of Nikkei and how they connect (or don’t) with their roots and with older generations. 

Discover Nikkei solicited stories related to Nikkei Generations from May to September 2021. Voting closed on November 8, 2021. We received 31 stories (21 English; 2 Japanese; 3 Spanish; and 7 Portuguese) from Australia, Brazil, Canada, Japan, New Zealand, Peru, and the US, with a few submitted in multiple languages.

An editorial committee chose a favorite story in each language. In addition, a Nima-kai favorite was determined by online community voting. Here are the selections! (*Translations of the selected stories are currently in progress.)

Editorial Committee’s Favorites

Nima-kai Favorite:

To learn more about this writing project >>

* This series is presented in partnership with: 

        ASEBEX

   

 

Check out these other Nikkei Chronicles series >> 

community en pt

My relationship with Nihongo

I think that most people who have Japanese origins have had contact with nihongo or colonia-go since childhood.

It is a kind of Nikkei dialect in Brazil, where it is a mix between Portuguese and old fashioned nihongo, since it carries the peculiarities and slangs from many parts of old Japan where the immigrants came from (hougen), as a result, an original dialect that is not found in any books, but we can understand each other very easily.

I'm very curious to know if other countries with Japanese immigration has something similar.

As a Nisei, my Parents …

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identity en

Geta, giri and going to Japan

My mother, Naomi Boese (née Taguchi), grew up in Tsuyama, Okayama-ken, Japan. Her mother was a housewife and her father was a postal official. Mum was the youngest of four children; the eldest was a girl, and two boys followed. Mum completed high school but her family couldn’t afford to send her to college, so she joined the staff at the US military base in Iwakuni.

She met my father, Selwyn Boese, sometime between 1955-57, when he was on discharge from the New Zealand Army after serving in the Korean War. My father found work as the assistant manager of …

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identity en

Japanese Kiwi

I descend from a long line of samurai families. I am the fifth of six children of my parents, Taeko Yoshioka and Noel Braid.

My parents met during the Japanese Occupation when Dad was on R&R there during his tour of duty in the Korean War. At 25 years old, he was a gunner in the 16th Field Regiment and my mother, 19, worked in a small, family noodle restaurant. My mother had a privileged upbringing as a child. My grandfather was an engineering officer in the Japanese Imperial Navy and my grandmother the daughter of a local doctor, both …

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identity en

Across Oceans

My parents met in Osaka when Mum was in her final year of school and Dad was a university student. Mum was an occasional backup singer on TV and graduated with a degree in nihongo (Japanese), while Dad worked as a sales representative for a kimono dress and fabric company.

They married in their 20s and enjoyed their life together for nearly a decade before I was born in 1987. With a baby on the way, Dad secured a job at a major Japanese real estate firm. He became a quintessential Japanese salaryman, leaving home before sunrise and returning late …

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community en ja es pt

An Unfortunate Break

They arrived in Peru on the same ship, the SS Hong Kong Maru. Four passengers among a small group of immigrants from Saga-Kiushu Prefecture, who, because their hometowns were close to each other, began a close friendship, one that could even be described as a “close brotherhood.” 

For five years they worked together at the Santa Barbara and Casa Blanca de Cañete plantations that belonged to British Sugar, 140 kilometers south of Lima.

Once their work contracts had ended, two of them, who I’ll call Tamotsu san and Tsunesuke san, moved to the city of Pisco, 90 kilometers south …

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Tags

abomb Australia bi-culture Brazil Casa Blanca Cañete citizenship colonia-go culture haciendas hibakusha hiroshima identity Iwakuni Japan Japanese Japanese Australian language New Zealand Peru Santa Bárbara Sydney traditions World War II