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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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Educating “Good” Nikkei and Okinawan Subjects

Educating “Good” Nikkei and Okinawan Subjects

(p.113) 4 Educating “Good” Nikkei and Okinawan Subjects
Embodying Belonging

Taku Suzuki

University of Hawai'i Press

This chapter focuses on educational institutions that actively sought to foster Okinawan-Bolivians as culturally hybrid subjects by infusing them with objectified and naturalized cultures. Specifically, it examines Okinawan-Bolivian schools in Colonia Okinawa, where most Nisei and Sansei children received Japanese language education and learned about the Japanese and Okinawan cultures. In portraying the various school events in Colonia Okinawa, such as the school track meet and Japanese-language speech contest, the chapter demonstrates the ways in which these educational institutions enabled, even encouraged, Okinawan-Bolivian youth to form, nurture, and embody their identities through the terms and images of essentialized and naturalized (Japanese, Okinawan, and Bolivian) cultures. These educational institutions in effect shaped Okinawan-Bolivian youth into transnational subjects who have developed an ambiguous sense of belonging in either Bolivia or Japan.

Keywords:   Okinawan-Bolivian schools, Colonia Okinawa, Japanese language education, Nisei, Sansei, Japanese culture

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