Archives in Context: Teachable Topics from the CSU Japanese American Digitization Project

Loyalties: Activity 1

1) Have the students browse the CSUJAD exhibit “Before the War” section to better understand the experience of the Japanese in the United States previous to WWII.

2) Have the students read the loyalty questionnaire below with a special focus on the last questions, number 27 and 28. It was given to all Japanese Americans age 17 and over in the War Relocation Authority (WRA) camps in February 1943, about a year after they had been uprooted from their homes on the west coast and moved into the WRA camps.

3) Based on the guiding questions below, have a classroom discussion about the various perspectives of the people of Japanese ancestry in the WRA camps. Reference the Terminology Differentiating People of Japanese Ancestry (Appendix A). 

Guiding questions

  1. If you were an Issei woman (1st generation, not allowed to become an American citizen), how might you respond to number 27 about serving in the armed forces?
  2. If you were a Nisei (2nd generation, American citizen), what might your reaction to number 28 forswearing allegiance to the Japanese emperor/foreign governments be?
  3. If you were an Issei (1st generation, not allowed to become an American citizen), what would giving up any allegiance to Japan leave you with?

This page has paths:

This page references: