During World War II, over 120,000 Japanese Americans were removed and confined for four years in sixteen camps located throughout the western half of the United States. Yet the internment of Japanese Americans in concentration camps remains a largely unknown episode of World War II history. Indeed, many of the internees themselves do not wish to speak of it, even to their own family members. In these selections, Alice Yang Murray invites students to investigate this event and to review and challenge the conventional interpretations of its significance. The selections explore the U.S. government's role in planning and carrying out the removal and internment of thousands of citizens, resident aliens, and foreign nationals, and the ways in which Japanese Americans coped with or resisted their removal and incarceration.
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ALICE YANG MURRAY is assistant professor of history at the University of California, Santa Cruz. She has published articles on the history of the internment, oral history, and the history of Asian American women. She is currently completing a manuscript entitled Better Americans in a Greater America: Japanese American Internment, Redress, and Historical Memory.Review:
'I like the premise of Historians at Work. Often when an assignment is given, students want to know in advance the question I want answered ... they read to answer the question rather than discovering the thesis on their own. The questions in this volume do a good job of guiding students through the reading exercise and giving purpose to the assignment...' - Tracy Steele, Sam Houston State University
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