Incarcerated Japanese Americans in dining hall during World War II

Delving Into the Archives of Japanese American Incarceration

Urban Planning Professor Karen Umemoto was featured in a UCLA Newsroom article about an undergraduate course focusing on the mass incarceration of Japanese Americans during the 1940s. Eighty years ago this month, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt issued Executive Order 9066 after the United States declared war on Japan and entered World War II. The order sent nearly 120,000 people of Japanese descent, branded suspicious solely by virtue of their heritage, to live in prison camps. The upper-division course immerses students in the growing online archive of primary source materials related to the experiences of Japanese Americans. It is co-taught by Umemoto, who directs the UCLA Asian American Studies Center, and public historian Brian Niiya, who earned a master’s in Asian American studies at UCLA.


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