Enter your mobile number below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
Getting the download link through email is temporarily not available. Please check back later.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
The Art of Gaman: Arts and Crafts from the Japanese American Internment Camps 1942-1946 Hardcover – October 1, 2005
|New from||Used from|
The Amazon Book Review
Author interviews, book reviews, editors picks, and more. Read it now
Frequently Bought Together
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
From Publishers Weekly
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
Top Customer Reviews
citizens during the later period of WWII. These prisoners
were kept in whitewashed horse stalls in California, Oregon
and the State of Washington. The camps emphasized education
including arts/crafts with a shortage of teachers.
Fine works of art include:
- The Natural Form of a Snake by Obata
- Kobu by Matsuhiro
- A Bonsai Notebook by Iseyama
- Shell Broaches and Corsages by Iwa Miura and Shintaku
The volume is a solid value for the price charged. It is a must
for serious students of WWII and historians everywhere.
I am old enough that I never learned about the Japanese internment camps in school. The first I ever heard about them was when I saw the film Come See the Paradise, and I was shocked. Not only that the US had also had concentration camps, a word I associated only with the nazis, but about the fact that it had been so hidden from my history books. Thankfully, that is not the case now, and people are much more aware of the suffering the Japanese people and their children, many native-born Americans, suffered during the racial paranoia of WWII.
But "The Art of Gaman" is not about the suffering. It is about the living, about the beautiful things that people did and made in order to make their situation more bearable. Forced to leave their homes with nothing more than they could carry, forbidden objects of metal, the people found themselves in cold, comfortless surroundings, far from the things they knew and loved. It started simply at first: a chair to sit in. a toy for a child. a picture to remind them of what they had lost. From there, it became a way to survive. Long hours with nothing to do were filled by making beautiful things. Those who had skills and knowledge set up classrooms to teach what they could. The making of art was even encouraged by the prison guards who saw the calming effect it had on their captives.
Few of these items survive.Read more ›
I think the strength of the book is the background to why the art and craft was produced. Hirasuna explains the rounding up process and public perceptions towards the Japanese only a few months after Pearl Harbor, the locations of the camps (as remote as possible it seems) and daily struggle in a hostile environment.
On page seventeen there is a map of the US and some camp statistics including a reference to Crystal City in Texas which bizarrely held 2264 ethnic Japanese from Latin and South America (1811 from Peru) who, having been forcibly taken to the camp, were then accused of entering the country illegally! After the war the Peruvians were not allowed to return home until Congress sorted out this injustice in 1953.
Look at the paintings, sculpture, craftwork and furniture and be amazed that most of it was created from whatever materials were available, discarded wood, sacking, vegetation, rocks, shells and anything that could be cut, woven or molded. My favorites are twenty-two brooches made from shells, ribbon and wire and they look just stunning. On pages 104-5 you can see a Buddhist shrine, five foot tall, with the most intricate carvings and hard to believe that it was probably made from firewood.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Beautiful, haunting, historical importance of the internment of the Japanese Americans during WWII. I recommend this book for any and all who have an interest in artwork from the... Read morePublished 10 months ago by Ava Lynda Fromkin
This book is beautiful. The images and text are fascinating.
I love it for my coffee table
Excellent information presented about the Japanese internment camps and the beautiful arts and crafts that were created within.Published 14 months ago by Super62
Because I did not know so much about the Japanese American's internment camps I found this book quite interesting. Read morePublished 21 months ago by margesmith65
an important book in the study of Japanese Americans and WWII.Published 23 months ago by Mick Marsh
I read an article a couple years ago in American Crafts on the activities in the internment camps during WW2. I was delighted to find this book available. It is wonderful. Read morePublished on July 15, 2014 by Judy S. Hallstrom