Mia Nakaji Monnier

Mia Najaki Monnier nasceu em Pasadena, filha de mãe japonesa e pai americano, e morou em onze cidades diferentes, entre elas Kyoto, no Japão; uma cidadezinha em Vermont; e em um subúrbio texano. Ela atualmente estuda literatura de não-ficção na University of Southern California enquanto escreve para o Rafu Shimpo e Hyphen Magazine, além de fazer estágio na Kaya Press. Você pode contatá-la através do email miamonnier@gmail.com.

Atualizado em fevereiro de 2013

culture en

Their Struggles Are Our Struggles - Part 1

Documentary filmmaker Tad Nakamura illustrates parallels between Japanese American history and current American issues

Tad Nakamura's Pilgrimage begins with a shot of candles in the darkness. The camera scans over the lowered heads of people gathered together in vigil outside the Japanese American National Museum, as music plays solemn and slow. As if pushed along by the music, the scene changes to black-and-white, grainy footage of a little girl running. All around her are barracks. Nearby, a plainly-dressed family gathers for a photo as an old woman looks on.


Manzanar in the 1940s, I realize.

The image of the woman fades away, replaced by …

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identity en

Maya Soetoro-Ng and the Gift of Belonging

Parents and children slowly began to gather in the upstairs foyer of the Japanese American National Museum on Saturday, June 12 to await the arrival of Maya Soetoro-Ng, scheduled to read from her upcoming children’s book, Ladder to the Moon .


Guests streamed in and out of the museum all day for a program full of events sponsored by the Target Family Free Saturday program in conjunction with the Mixed Roots Film Festival. Other events included a demonstration on how to work with naturally curly hair and an urban dance performance by L.A. dance group Culture Shock. Related organizations …

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community en

16 Years Later: The Heart Mountain Barracks Project

Upstairs in the Japanese American National Museum is a barrack from Heart Mountain Relocation Center. For visitors, the barrack has come to feel like the heart of the museum, a tangible reminder of the unconstitutional incarceration of over 120,000 Japanese Americans during WWII in America’s own concentration camps.


The story of how the barrack came to the museum began more than fifteen years ago, around the time when staff members began discussing plans to relocate the museum’s collection to a new building. Early supporters of the idea, including staff member Nancy Araki and graphic designer and former Heart Mountain …

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culture en

Japanese American National Museum Store Online

Joel Nakamura Mixes the Ancient and the Modern with Compassion... and Spam?

A giant fly hovers, poised on translucent wings that appear too small to support his weight, his face a bright, whimsical Tiki mask in shades of blue, green, and yellow. Protruding from his body are three pairs of human-like legs in black and gray patterned tights. In the distance, his friends watch, their faces frozen in horror and amusement. The fly’s eyes burn with concentration as his tongue strains toward his prey: a winged, rectangular can of Spam.

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This is Joel Nakamura’s painting, “Unnatural Selection,” and like the rest of his work, it has the uncommon ability to …

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media en

The Pond - Part 2

>> Part 1

After a train ride, another bus ride, and a five-minute walk, I was in front of Auntie Junko’s house. She lived in a one-story stucco house separated by a short flight of stairs from the sidewalk. Her front yard was divided, a miniature grove of five or six citrus trees in the grass near the street hiding a rock garden closer to the house. In the rocks by the door sat a ceramic sculpture of a chubby raccoon-looking creature with a toothy smile and huge balls. Some kind of Japanese luck thing, though I didn’t remember what …

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