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Japanese American Resettlement through the Lens: Hikaru Iwasaki and the WRA's Photographic Section, 1943-1945 [Hardcover]

by Lane Ryo Hirabayashi, Hikaru Iwasaki, Kenichiro Shimada
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)

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Book Description

March 31, 2009 0870819283 978-0870819285
Photographs by Hikaru C. IwasakiForeword by the Honorable Norman Y. Mineta
In Japanese American Resettlement through the Lens, Lane Ryo Hirabayashi gathers a unique collection of photographs by War Relocation Authority photographer Hikaru Iwasaki, the only full-time WRA photographer from the period still living.


With substantive focus on resettlement - and in particular Iwasaki's photos of Japanese Americans following their release from WRA camps from 1943 to 1945 - Hirabayashi explores the WRA's use of photography in its mission not only to encourage "loyal" Japanese Americans to return to society at large as quickly as possible but also to convince Euro-Americans this was safe and advantageous. Hirabayashi also assesses the relative success of the WRA project, as well as the multiple uses of the photographs over time, first by the WRA and then by students, scholars, and community members in the present day.


Although the photos have been used to illustrate a number of publications, this book is the first sustained treatment addressing questions directly related to official WRA photographs. How and under what conditions were they taken? Where were they developed, selected, and stored? How were they used during the 1940s? What impact did they have during and following the war?


By focusing on the WRA's Photographic Section, Japanese American Resettlement through the Lens makes a unique contribution to the body of literature on Japanese Americans during World War II.

Frequently Bought Together

Japanese American Resettlement through the Lens: Hikaru Iwasaki and the WRA's Photographic Section, 1943-1945 + Colors of Confinement: Rare Kodachrome Photographs of Japanese American Incarceration in World War II (Documentary Arts and Culture)
Price for both: $51.82

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Editorial Reviews


"It deserves a place on coffee tables and home libraries of anyone with any degree of social and historical consciousness, Japanese American or not."
—George Toshio Johnston, Rafu Shimpo

"They are striking images of proud people who faced their government imposed adversity with dignity and even humor. They are photographs for the ages."
—Sandra Dallas, The Denver Post

About the Author

Lane Ryo Hirabayashi is The George and Sakaye Aratani Professor of the Japanese American Incarceration, Redress, and Community at UCLA, and author and editor of numerous titles, including Reversing the Lens (UPC), Common Ground (UPC), The Politics of Fieldwork: Research in an American Concentration Camp and Teaching Asian America: Diversity & the Problem of Community.

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 224 pages
  • Publisher: University Press of Colorado (March 31, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0870819283
  • ISBN-13: 978-0870819285
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 11.2 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,034,966 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Japanese-American Resettlement Through the Lens January 17, 2011
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This was an artful compilation of Hikaru Iwasaki's photographic documentation of Japanese-American resettlement from WWII relocation centers. I first learned of the book in an article published in the Denver Post last summer. My mother was a young girl during the war. She was relocated to Heart Mountain, Wyoming with her parents and younger brother. There is a picture of my grandfather in the book. Aside from its personal meaning I enjoyed this book for the beauty of the photographs. Iwasaki managed to capture a glow in the people and places that participated in the resettlement. I have read extensively on the Japanese-American relocation and have found it to be a sad part of our history. I would like to say that this book was more a testament to happier times and the kindness and compassion of the American people.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Everyone should see this book! July 22, 2013
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Beautifully done photo account of a time we should always be aware of. I keep it on my coffe table. Very educational!
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