Reading for Mon 3/26 – Japanese-American Internment

by Tona H - March 16th, 2012

Our next class meeting will be Monday 3/26 when we talk about World War II, and in particular the internment of Japanese immigrants and Japanese Americans. The reading will be a 7-page excerpt from Melvin Urofsky’s constitutional history, download it here as a PDF.

In addition, please explore two websites that can help give a human dimension to this episode:

JARDA, the Japanese American Relocation Digital Archive – a rich digital collection of text, artwork, and other material from the first-person perspective of internment camp residents and staff. Spend some time looking around, and bring/print/highlight/note some of the items that catch your notice for our class discussion.

Drama in the Delta, a RPG (role-playing game) currently under development, designed to help young people understand life in the camps, based on the Rohwer and Jerome camps, which were located in Arkansas. You can, depending on your time, inclination and hardware, download a prototype for Windows machines and try it out, or just explore the website and what the developers hope the game will accomplish.

See also: “A More Perfect Union: Japanese Americans and the U.S. Constitution,” Smithsonian online exhibit

And, if you’re interested you may want to look at the relevant Supreme Court cases:
Hirabiyashi v. United States (1943)
Yasui v. United States (1943)
Korematsu v. United States (1944)
Ex parte Endo (1944)
Duncan v. Kahanamoku (1946)

Image: courtesy of the American Memory collection of Ansel Adams photographs at the Manzanar Camp

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