Vozes de Chicago

Os artigos dessa série foram originalmente publicados em “Vozes de Chicago (Voices of Chicago)”, o jornal online da Chicago Japanese American Historical Society, que é uma organização participante do Descubra Nikkei desde dezembro de 2004.

“Voices of Chicago” é uma coleção de narrativas em primeira pessoa sobre as experiências de pessoas de descendência japonesa que moram em Chicago. A comunidade é composta por três ondas de imigração e seus descendentes: a primeira, cerca de 300 pessoas, chegou a Chicago mais ou menos na época do Columbian Exposition em 1899. O segundo e maior grupo é descendente de 30.000 pessoas que vieram diretamente para Chicago a partir dos campos de concentração após a Segunda Guerra Mundial. Chamados de "reassentados", eles criaram uma comunidade construída em torno de organizações de serviços sociais, igrejas budistas e cristãs e pequenas empresas. O terceiro grupo, mais recente, é de cidadãos japoneses que vieram para Chicago, com início na década de 1980, como artistas e estudantes, e [ali] permaneceram. Um quarto grupo, não-imigrante, é de executivos japoneses e suas famílias que vivem em Chicago por longos períodos, às vezes permanentemente.

Chicago tem sido sempre um lugar onde as pessoas podem recriar a si mesmas e onde diversas comunidades étnicas vivem e trabalham juntas. O “Voices of Chicago” conta histórias de membros de cada um desses quatro grupos e como eles se encaixam no mosaico de uma grande cidade.

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On Being Japanese American...

Growing up in the 1970’s in Chicago’s near west suburbs, there were few people like me. In fact, my sister and I were the only half Japanese, half Swedish/German girls on our block (or in our community for that matter). Most people thought I was Chinese and it didn’t take long to realize that “chink” was not a friendly word. As a kid, I gravitated towards the “others”, the few kids in the neighborhood who were Puerto Rican, Mexican or who just didn’t fit in. Despite being isolated from other Japanese or other Asian Americans ...

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Connecting Cultures through Kimono and Sari

On a February morning when a faint hint of spring was in the air, a diverse group of Chicagoans gathered at the Indo-American Center on North California Avenue to discuss how attire and appearance impact the Japanese American and Asian Indian American communities. Present were representatives from the Field Museum, the Indo-American Center, and the Chicago Japanese American Historical Society.

This was the second planning session for Cultural Connections Program, a program administered by the Field Museum’s Center for Cultural Understanding and Change (CCUC). The CCUC brings the museum’s anthropological mission into the neighborhoods of Chicago by partnering ...

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Day of Remembrance 2006

Issei, Nisei, Sansei, Yonsei, Gosei. It never occurred to me that I would live to see five generations of Japanese Americans, but I have.

When Japan bombed Pearl Harbor on December 7th, 1941, our country was thrown into turmoil. Most of the world was already involved in what would be known as World War II, and now the United States was dragged into it. Old feelings of racial prejudice reared up against Japanese Americans, who were considered a threat to this country by some now that we were at war with Japan. Despite evidence by government organizations, including the F ...

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Shinkichi Tajiri : World Renown Sculptor

Shinkichi Tajiri, a world renowned sculptor, celebrated his 80th birthday with a Netherlands exhibit showcasing many of his wonderful creations including the sculptures of 47 ronins. One of Shinkichi's earlier pieces, "Father and Son" in limestone was completed while living in Chicago in 1946. His friendship knots are well known and can be found all over the world. One is displayed outside the Japanese American National Museum in Los Angeles. "Granny Knot" is at the Rockefeller Foundation in New York City and another in Bryeres in France, commemorating 50 years of liberation by the 442nd Regimental Combat Team (RCT ...

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Sports, Community, and History: Reflections on Recording the Japanese American Experience in Chicago

Outside, the bone-chilling February winds are blowing fiercely off of Lake Michigan, but inside, the buzz of the crowd seems to provide as much insulation as the sturdy brick walls of the old gymnasium. The spectators draw their energy from the teams’ frenzied movements down on the basketball court, as the players in turn feed off of the cheers from the stands and pick up their intensity. Due to the heated atmosphere of the game, everyone forgets the icy Chicago winter for the moment. Virtually no one in attendance was born in a place where they had to endure such ...

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