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From Race to EthnicityInterpreting Japanese American Experiences in Hawaii$
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Jonathan Y. Okamura

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780824839505

Published to Hawaii Scholarship Online: November 2016

DOI: 10.21313/hawaii/9780824839505.001.0001

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Activism and Advocacy

Activism and Advocacy

Yonsei Leaders

(p.165) Chapter 7 Activism and Advocacy
From Race to Ethnicity

Jonathan Y. Okamura

University of Hawai'i Press

This chapter takes a look at four yonsei individuals who have served as political activists and cultural advocates, primarily for the benefit of ethnic groups other than Japanese Americans: Kyle Kajihiro, a community leader in the demilitarization movement in Hawaiʻi; Candace Fujikane, associate professor in the Department of English at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa, who has researched, published, and taught on behalf of Filipino Americans and Native Hawaiians; Blake Oshiro, a state representative who authored Hawaiʻi's civil unions bill that became law in 2011, thus giving persons in civil unions the same rights and benefits as married persons; and Norman Kaneshiro, a cultural advocate for traditional Okinawan dance, music, and culture in general in Hawaiʻi and Okinawa. The chapter shows how their advocacy and activism have made it possible for Kajihiro, Fujikane, Oshiro, and Kaneshiro to contribute in redefining the meaning of being Japanese American in Hawaiʻi.

Keywords:   yonsei, ethnic groups, Japanese Americans, Kyle Kajihiro, Hawaiʻi, Candace Fujikane, Blake Oshiro, Norman Kaneshiro, advocacy, activism

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