Becoming Nisei: Japanese American Urban Lives in Prewar Tacoma - by Lisa M. Hoffman & Mary L. Hanneman
Becoming Nisei: Japanese American Urban Lives in Prewar Tacoma
by Lisa M. Hoffman & Mary L. Hanneman
Published by University of Washington Press, Seattle
Tacoma's vibrant Nihonmachi (Japan Town) of the 1920s and '30s was home to tight-knit yet economically and religiously diverse families of first-generation Japanese immigrants and their second-generation American children. As the city's Nisei grew up attending the secular Tacoma Japanese Language School, they absorbed the Meiji-era cultural practices and ethics of the previous generation while at the same time resisting their parents and pursuing lives that diverged from traditional expectations.
Becoming Nisei, based on more than forty interviews, shares stories of growing up in Japanese American Tacoma before the incarceration. Recording these early twentieth-century lives counteracts the structural forgetting and erasure of prewar histories in both Tacoma and many other cities after World War II. Lisa Hoffman and Mary Hanneman underscore both the agency of Nisei in these processes and their negotiations with prevailing social and power relations.
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