Yuri Kochiyama and her family were among 120,000 Japanese Americans on the West Coast rounded up in a wave of anti-Japanese hysteria.
Following the bombing of Pearl Harbor, President Franklin D. Roosevelt gave the army power to arrest all Japanese Americans (three-fourths of them children born in the United States), take their land, homes, businesses, and transport them to camps where they would live under prison conditions.
Film Clip Description
Yuri Kochiyama describes the conditions of the detention camps. This text is from an oral history that Kochiyama recounted to Joann Faung Jean Lee. It is excerpted from Lee’s book, Asian Americans: Oral Histories of First to Fourth Generation Americans from China, the Philippines, Japan, India, the Pacific Islands, Vietnam, and Cambodia (New Press, 1992). The text was read by Deepa Fernandes on March 10, 2007, at the Great Hall at Cooper Union, New York, NY. The excerpt is from Voices of a People’s History of the United States edited by Howard Zinn and Anthony Arnove.