A Black-Japanese student enters a Japanese school. The Japanese students are amazed, curious, condescending, afraid, finding ways to make him outcast.
This Short Film, written and directed by Emmanuel Osei-Kuffour, Jr., shines a lens onto a small town, and gives a picture of how Japanese-mix children and people, and black-mixed people and Blacks are treated in Japan.
I was born in Japan and raised there until 1962-3. Then again, from 1968 to 1970–when I was 13 to 15 years old. There was a difference in the two periods.
In the 50s and 60s, racism was more overt, physically violent, and widespread– for me and my kind in Japan. In the late 60s, it was more private and more prone to ostracizing and teasing, although physical violence was still a relative normal response. And as we know from news reports and stories of public figures in Japan who are Black-Japanese, it has not changed much in Japan.
The director hoped to shine a light on this persistent problem of Japanese identity and its treatment of “the other.”
Today, according to a few sources, there are an estimated two million Amerasians–children and adults of local women across Asia who have been sired by United Statian military and civilian men and abandoned by the men. If we are to include Ameri-Pacifics–those born in the Pacific and South Seas Islands, the numbers would, of course, be higher. Often, in these stories, the harrowing and rough stories of Amerasians are told, and must be continued to be told. But the stories of the mothers, are backgrounded.
My book: Dream of the Water Children: Memory and Mourning in the Black Pacific, is slated to be out in late spring 2016, in June. All is on schedule so far.
We are working on the layout and design right now, including the placement of the photos. I am also editing the Afterword section after the editor worked with it.
The Layout is beautiful! I thank Gabrielle David and the folks at 2Leaf Press for their very very hard work, their tenacity and dedication.
They walk their talk. A press dedicated to multicultural literature and education is rare! I am so happy with our work together, although as usual, it’s not all easy.
In the Fall of 2014, a group of Mixed-Korean Amerasians, mostly adoptees from Mixed-race orphanages in Korea, went on a small tour organized by the tour group Me & Korea, back to Korea, to the orphanages, and to meet Insooni 김인순 — Black-Korean pop-star/diva, who was partially responsible for this event.
Like most other Asian nations where American soldiers have tread, there are born the babies from the union between the local women and American servicemen. In Korea, Philippines, Okinawa, Mariana /Solomon Islands, former South Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, etc.– the Americans have ‘fun’ there, and then go back to the Mainland U.S.A. to join their American families (or are single).
There is a fantastic series of seminars going on at University of Southern California, as part of the Sawyer-Mellon Seminars. It is called: Critical Mixed Race Studies–A Transpacific Approach. This seminar is being held on weekends throughout the school year.
My Book will be published in the Fall of 2014 – by 2Leaf Press.
I will keep everyone updated.
I have provided the Vimeo introductory video here. More will follow.
While watching this video, there are two issues I want to mention.
SORRY–THIS BOOK WILL BE DELAYED until 2017.
During the immediate postwar, the Japanese government and newly formed civic leaders, were in heated debates on what to do with the mixed-Japanese children left by US, British, Australian, and other allied nations’ military men, with the majority being by the US Americans.