No Sword to Bury: Japanese Americans in Hawai'i During World War II

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Dezember 2003



When bombs rained down on Pearl Harbor in 1941, Japanese American college students were among the many young men enrolled in ROTC and called upon to defend the islands against invasion immediately after the attack. In a matter of weeks, however, the military government questioned their loyalty and disarmed them. In this book, Franklin Odo places the largely unfold story of the war-time experience of these young men in the context of the community created by their immigrant families and its relationship to the larger, white-dominated society. At the heart of the book are vivid oral histories that recall the young men's service on the home front in the Varsity Victory Volunteers, a non-military group dedicated to public works, as well as in the segregated 442nd Regimental Combat Team that fought in Europe and the Military Intelligence Service. Odo shows how their war-time experience Services and their post-war success in business and politics contributed to the simplistic view of Japanese Americans as a model minority in Hawai'i and glossed over significant differences in their lives and perspectives. "No Sword to Bury is a book about a critical moment in ethnic identity formation among the first generation of Americans of Japanese descent (the nisei) as well as a history of their community during the war.


Introduction: The Making of a Model Minority 1. Immigrant Parents 2. Generation on Trial: The 1920s 3. Before the Fire: The 1930s 4. Pearl Harbor 5. Hawai'i Territorial Guard 6. The Varsity Victory Volunteers Photo Gallery 7. Schofield Barracks 8. The Front Lines: Battlefront and Home Front 9. After the War Conclusion Appendix: Roster of Varsity Victory Volunteers Notes Bibliography Acknowledgments Index


Franklin Odo is Director of the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Program and editor of The Columbia Documentary History of the Asian American Experience


"an important addition to an understudied aspect of Japanese American's wartime experience." The Historian "Seldom has a work drawn from military history provided such a rich assortment of provocative reflections on ethnic group identity, racism, and social forces.[Odo's] notable success [is] in stimulating hard thinking about the history of Japanese Americans and of American society." The American Historical Review "this book makes an important contribution by showing how the racial reformation of the Nisei contributed to the model minority myth." The Journal of American History "Seldom has a work drawn from military history provided such a rich assortment of provocative reflections on ethnic group identity, racism, and social forces." The American Historical Review "[This book] is a long-anticipated work that should not disappoint its readers. Extending beyond the VVV experience, No Sword to Bury is a significant contribution to our understanding and analysis of Japanese American history in Hawai'i, particularly of the Nisei generation, and complements well other major works that appeared in the 1990s. Odo's achievement lies in detailing the diverse lives and viewpoints of the VVV members in their own words through many revealing oral history interviews." The Contemporary Pacific "a deep and detailed look at an articulate and important group... a good addition to the literature on Asian America, on WW II's transformation of American life, and on Hawai'i." Biography: An Interdisciplinary Journal "[A] significant addition to the literature in western U.S. history...a fine book, [it] promises to be an important work for years to come." --History: Reviews of New Books "One of the strengths of No Sword to Bury is Odo's care in presenting a more layered, nuanced study of Japanese Americans and their role in Hawaiian history. What emerges is a portrait of a lively, diverse group of men who had mixed motives and feelings of what they did during the course of their lives." --International Examiner "Franklin Odo has captured with much warmth and poignancy, the emotions of men who, though abandoned by their country, loved this country and proved it by repeatedly standing in harm's way to defend it." --Senator Daniel K. Inouye (D, HI) "No Sword to Bury is a fascinating study of an often overlooked part of the story of Americans of Japanese ancestry in the World War II era. The Japanese American population of Hawai'i navigated its way through one of the most dangerous and transformational periods in U.S. history. Franklin Odo's use of personal stories of the men and women who made that journey reveals the choices that were made, the strategies that were used, and the lessons we all can draw from them." --The Hon. Norman Y. Mineta "No Sword to Bury is a masterful contribution based on years of painstaking research. In fact, there is nothing quite like it written about the Japanese American experience. Franklin Odo presents a detailed history of the Varsity Victory Volunteers in the larger context of Hawai'i before and during World War II. He does an excellent job of marshalling data from the extant literature, rare archival sources, and most importantly, a plethora of original oral history interviews. The voices and biographies of key VVV members and the public figures in Hawai'i who supported their endeavors lie at the core of Odo's work. Captivating and informative, No Sword to Bury demonstrates the multicultural dynamics that have been so central in the formation of our 50th state." --Lane Ryo Hirabayashi, Professor of Ethnic Studies, University of California, Riverside "Franklin Odo's carefully researched, textured narrative examines a select group of second generation Japanese American, or Nisei men who volunteered to be manual laborers for the U.S. Army for approximately the first year of the war... Odo's excellent book helps us begin to understand why." American Studies
EAN: 9781592132072
ISBN: 1592132073
Untertitel: 'Asian American History & Cultu'. Sprache: Englisch.
Erscheinungsdatum: Dezember 2003
Seitenanzahl: 328 Seiten
Format: gebunden
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