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Unswerving cyclist
14 Mar 2002
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The WP featured a piece on the fourth-generation descendants of Japanese families who emigrated to South America a century ago and began returning in the 1980s as Japan’s economy boomed and Brazil’s faltered and the song of the Green Kids, a group anchored by performers with mixed Japanese-South American lineage, who are part of a small, but important, awakening in Japan that is shining a light on immigrants and discrimination, identity and marginalization.


“A line has been drawn: The government sees the fourth generation’s linkages as not being as strong, that their Japanese blood is thinner,” Ishi said. That is causing frustration among many fourth-generation Japanese Brazilians, who “feel the government is colder toward them. They feel hurt,” he said. The irony, said Shigehiro Ikegami, a professor at Shizuoka University of Art and Culture, is that children who make it through the school system end up fluent in Portuguese and Japanese, and some are now going on to build successful careers at Japanese companies. At a time when Japanese companies say they are seeking global talent, they have a largely untapped resource under their noses, Ikegami said. But Japanese education isn’t set up to provide the Japanese Brazilian community with the support it needs.



3 Sep 2020
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I’m sure in a relatively small, strongly homogeneous country such as Japan, any foreigner living there will eventually face some form of discrimination or another. Ask the Koreans. But I don’t think it helps the Brazillian-Japanese immigrants, shown in the video, if they hold vast cultural and social norm differences from traditional Japanese. Wonder how the influx of so many different cultures will shape the future Japan.

In some Asian countries I’m aware of, even full-blooded immigrants one generation removed regularly face subtle and overt discrimination in various aspects of work and life.
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10 Sep 2017
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Cool, will play that tune on my stereo when taking a walk in the neighborhood ! :eek::eek::eek:

nice gaijin

Resident Realist
8 Aug 2005
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I took a course on Sociology in Japan back in college, and we read this excellent book about the Brazilian diaspora. It's a fascinating history and definitely an unrecognized and untapped cultural asset that actually helps disprove the often-repeated myth of Japan as some kind of monolithic homogenous culture. Had it not been for this book I would've been REALLY surprised to see carnival-like parades in certain Tokyo neighborhoods when I later lived there.

It's not terribly encouraging to see that the Japanese government, rather than realizing the foolishness of their jus sanguinis approach to citizenship, have doubled down and claimed that these immigrants' Japanese blood is "too thin." Yikes.

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