Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Kennedy Lecture Series speaker discusses Japanese war brides

Miki Crawford, Ph.D., recently spoke on campus about her 2009 book, Japanese War Brides in America: An Oral History and its subsequent documentary film.   The book and documentary depict the stories of 19 Japanese war brides whose cultural assimilation experience considerably influenced future generations.

The event, “Her Story,” is part of the annual Kennedy Lecture Series, which endeavors to attract speakers of particular interest to campus. The presentation was sponsored by the campus’ cultural committee, and was free and open to the public.

Following the conclusion of World War II, Congress passed the War Brides Act of 1945, permitting foreign wives of U.S. military officials to immigrate to the United States. An estimated 50,000 women migrated from Japan to the United States between 1946 and 1965, despite a ban on Asian immigration that was simultaneously in place. Crawford’s book explores the racial tensions, social segregation and cross-cultural conflicts that inevitably accompanied the transitions these women endured.

Crawford is the daughter of a Japanese war bride. She is also a faculty member and interim associate dean of the university’s Southern Campus.

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