Tadaima 2021 Author Talk: When Can We Go Back To America? with Susan H. Kamei

September 12, 2021

Tadaima 2021 author talk with Susan H. Kamei, author of When Can We Go Back To America?  Voices of Japanese American Incarceration During WWII. Recorded by the Japanese Cultural and Community Center of Northern California on Tuesday, September 14, 2021.

Join us for an online author talk as part of this year’s community-wide Tadaima virtual pilgrimage lineup of daily virtual programs on the Japanese American WWII incarceration with Susan H. Kamei, author of the new book, When Can We Go Back to America? Voices of Japanese American Incarceration During World War II (Simon & Schuster 2021). In the book, the voices of those who lived through this experience—many of them children, teenagers, and young adults who were US citizens—illuminate the frightening reality and enduring tragedy of this dark period in American history. Through their stories, you will confront how and why an unconstitutional, large-scale, racially-based incarceration occurred in our country founded on principles of justice and freedom. Those incarcerated included members of Susan’s family. Her mother and her parents were imprisoned at the Santa Anita Assembly Center in Arcadia, California, and then at the Heart Mountain War Relocation Center near Cody, Wyoming. Her father, his grandparents, parents, and siblings spent the war years in the Poston II Relocation Center in Poston, Arizona. Susan was a volunteer leader in the campaign for the Civil Liberties Act of 1988 that acknowledged these wrongful actions and provided token reparation payments to the survivors of the wartime detention. She continues her commitment to educating the public about this shameful episode in our country’s history and to creating greater awareness of why our civil liberties need to be protected now more than ever.

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