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Embodying BelongingRacializing Okinawan Diaspora in Bolivia and Japan$
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Taku Suzuki

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780824833442

Published to Hawaii Scholarship Online: November 2016

DOI: 10.21313/hawaii/9780824833442.001.0001

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The Making of Patrones Japonesas and Dekasegi Migrants

The Making of Patrones Japonesas and Dekasegi Migrants

(p.54) 2 The Making of Patrones Japonesas and Dekasegi Migrants
Embodying Belonging

Taku Suzuki

University of Hawai'i Press

This chapter examines the visible signs of Okinawan-Bolivians' economic and social status in Colonia Okinawa and Tsurumi. It focuses on the labor market and the workplace as “critical sites” of racialization, in which Okinawan-Bolivians' ambiguous belonging in Colonia Okinawa and urban Japan were embodied and performed. It sketches the labor market structures in Bolivia and interventions by state institutions, such as JICA and the government of Okinawa Prefecture, both of which played critical roles in shaping Okinawan-Bolivians' subject positions. It portrays everyday encounters between Okinawan-Bolivians and non-Nikkei Bolivians and Japanese Naichi-jin at their workplaces, such as farm fields and cattle ranches, in Colonia Okinawa. Okinawan-Bolivians' contradictory class positions in the rural Colonia Okinawa community and in the larger (urban) Bolivian society are reflected in their racialized stereotypes of themselves and various non-Nikkei Bolivian groups within and outside Colonia Okinawa.

Keywords:   Okinawan-Bolivians, economic status, social status, Bolivia, Colonia Okinawa, labor market, workplace, racialization, racial stereotypes

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