Nikkei Conversations: Mass Incarceration, Past and Present

The JASC Legacy Center Presents A “Memories of Now” Seminar Series Presentation.
Co-sponsored by the Chicago Japanese American Historical Society (CJAHS) and Japanese  American Citizens League – Chicago Chapter (JACL).

This program is made possible in part by a grant from Illinois Humanities, with support from the MacArthur Foundation’s Safety and Justice Challenge.

Tuesday, August 21, 2018 | 6:30pm – 8:30pm
At the JASC  (4427 N Clark St.)

Today, about 2.2 million people are incarcerated in jails and prisons in the U.S., the highest rate of incarceration of any country on the planet, and a 500% increase in the rate of incarceration from 40 years ago. While Black people make up only about 12% of the U.S. population, about 33.4% of people in U.S. prisons and jails are Black. The systematic targeting of Black communities by racist policing and incarceration policies is a major focus of racial justice movements including Black Lives Matter.

Nikkei communities in the U.S. have our own, but very different, experiences of incarceration during World War II. We aim to hold a compassionate and challenging conversation to draw connections between our own community’s history of racist incarceration to current struggles for racial justice and against incarceration. We’ll also explore how Nikkei communities could benefit from collectively taking a stand against unjust incarceration, and highlight some current Chicago efforts to say no to racist policing and incarceration.

This workshop is designed for people of the Japanese diaspora living in the U.S. to explore these issues and experiences, but is open to everyone. This workshop will be discussion based and will draw upon the knowledge of participants and facilitators.

Workshop facilitators:

Anne (she/her) is a queer yonsei & shin-nisei nursing student living in Chicago, with family roots in Canada and Japan. She is a member of Invisible to Invincible: Asian Pacific Islander Pride of Chicago (i2i). Anne believes in the medicinal power of storytelling and history, and in the importance of personal and collective healing of intergenerational trauma and oppression.

JJ Ueunten (they/them) is a genderqueer and transmasculine Okinawan and Japanese yonsei who grew up in Hawaii. They are a massage therapist, and a member of Invisible to Invincible: Asian Pacific Islander Pride of Chicago (i2i). They care deeply and imperfectly about all people having access to healing.

Event is Free; Parking available in JASC parking lot
RSVP with Ryan Yokota: 773-275-0097, ext. 222 | ryokota@jasc-chicago.org.

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