Japanese American Home Movies – California’s Gold (106)

It’s like stepping back in time. A glimpse of what life was like in California during the 1920s, 30s and 40s. And this look back is made even more fascinating because it is from the Japanese-American perspective through the medium of home movies! In this special one-hour episode, Huell visits with Karen Ishizuka, the senior curator of the Japanese American National Museum in Los Angeles for a first-hand look at these remarkable movies. Karen is responsible for gathering these movies together from all over California — seldom seen movies that document in a simple, yet profound way the everyday lives of Japanese Americans.

Also included in this program is a poignant 40-minute film entitled: “Something Strong Within,” made entirely of home movies shot inside the internment camps that Japanese Americans were forced into during World War II. What these movies from the camps reveal in their elegant, un-narrated silence, is a proud people struggling to maintain a sense of normalcy in a very difficult situation. The entire one-hour special is entitled simply: “Japanese American Home Movies.” Not only do these movies serve as documents of a people’s history, but are also rich examples of California’s Gold.

Link to Japanese American National Museum Home Movie Collection – http://www.janm.org/collections/homemovies/

Keywords: #home movies #immigrant #internment #interment camp #Japanese American #Japanese American National Museum #Japanese immigrant #Karen Ishizuka #Los Angeles #Something Strong Within #World War II

1997 April