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Confinement and Ethnicity: An Overview of World War II Japanese American Relocation Sites
Item No.: 150725


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By Jeffery F. Burton, Mary M. Farrell, Florence B. Lord, and Richard W. Lord. With a new foreword by Tetsuden Kashima.

Confinement and Ethnicity documents in unprecedented detail the various facilities in which persons of Japanese ancestry living in the western United States were confined during World War II: the fifteen “assembly centers” run by the U.S. Army’s Wartime Civil Control Administration, the ten “relocation centers” created by the War Relocation Authority, and the internment camps, penitentiaries, and other sites under the jurisdiction of the Justice and War Departments.

Winner of the John Cotter Award for Excellence in National Park Service Archeology, Confinement and Ethnicity was originally published as a report of the Western Archeological and Conservation Center. It is now reissued in a corrected edition, with a new Foreword by Tetsuden Kashima.

Based on archival research, field visits, and interviews with former residents, Confinement and Ethnicity provides an overview of the architectural remnants, archeological features, and artifacts remaining at the various sites. Included are numerous maps, diagrams, charts, and photographs. Historic photographs of the sites and their inhabitants—including several by Dorothea Lange and Ansel Adams—are combined with images of present-day settings, showing concrete foundations, fence posts, inmate-constructed drainage ditches, and foundations and parts of buildings, as well as inscription in Japanese and English written or scratched on walls and rocks. The result is a unique and poignant treasure house of information for former residents and their descendants, for Asian American and WWII historians, and for anyone interested in the facts about what the authors call “sites of shame.”

Paper: 449 pp. B/w photos.

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