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Trans-Pacific Japanese American StudiesConversations on Race and Racializations$
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Yasuko Takezawa and Gary Y. Okihiro

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780824847586

Published to Hawaii Scholarship Online: May 2017

DOI: 10.21313/hawaii/9780824847586.001.0001

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Japanese American Progressives

Japanese American Progressives

A Case Study in Identity Formation

Chapter:
(p.342) Chapter 14 Japanese American Progressives
Source:
Trans-Pacific Japanese American Studies
Author(s):

Mari Matsuda

Publisher:
University of Hawai'i Press
DOI:10.21313/hawaii/9780824847586.003.0015

Mari Matsuda is a third-generation Okinawan/Japanese American progressive. In this chapter, she intertwines family history with Japanese American political, intellectual, and social history to describe the trajectory of left-wing activism in the Nikkei community. Far from the stereotype model minority, the Issei, Nisei, and Sansei radicals described here were outspoken risk takers. Matsuda uses this history to ask a question of contemporary relevance: what are the conditions under which immigrant communities will rise up in organized challenge to conditions of subordination? She considers the role of, among other things, literacy, Marx, trained organizers, strategic goals, cultural production, and multi-racial coalition in shaping three generations of progressive politics in Japanese/Okinawan-American lives.

Keywords:   social movement, radical, left, progressive, Marxist, Vietnam War, McCarthyism, Don Matsuda, Karl Yoneda

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