Densho eNews - June

From the Director: Tom Ikeda

You can make a difference in keeping alive the story of the World War II incarceration of Japanese Americans. It will take a time commitment of five hours, but when you are done, you will be more knowledgeable about Japanese American history and have set in motion the teaching of this history to hundreds of students in your community. Beyond this important opportunity for enriching yourself and your community, we will also send you two award-winning DVDs (Conscience and the Constitution and Legacy of Heart Mountain) for your efforts. So what do you have to do in these five hours? Simply take our free online course that was designed for teachers and then encourage a couple of teachers to also take the course. Click here for more information about the course and how to register.

Densho's online course, Teaching World War II Incarceration with Primary Sources, was launched last month and teachers are telling us that they really like it:

"In all my years in education and taking professional development online courses, this course is the most powerful lesson I have ever done. It impacted me professionally (fantastic teaching strategies I will incorporate into my lessons) and emotionally (by bringing my awareness to social injustices)."

"The course is truly excellent and valuable, and I hope I can do justice to the lessons and materials."

"I am so impressed (but not surprised!) by the high quality and attention to detail of this course."

We want as many teachers as possible to hear about this course, especially during the summer when many have some extra time. And when you take the course, you will not only learn more about Japanese American history but will experience a new and innovative way of helping teachers. Thank you and I would love to hear your thoughts on the course once you've taken it; feel free to email me at [email protected].

Archive Spotlight

Yuri Kochiyama: A Visit from the FBI Following the Bombing of Pearl Harbor

Our Archive Spotlight clip this month is from Densho's interview with civil rights activist Yuri Kochiyama, in remembrance of the one-year anniversary of her passing. In this clip she describes teaching a Sunday school class and hearing about the bombing of Pearl Harbor, then coming home to witness her father's arrest by the FBI. Yuri Kochiyama's full interview is available in the Densho Digital Archive.

>> View the interview excerpt
>> Register for the free Densho Digital Archive
>> Read the Densho Encyclopedia article on Yuri Kochiyama

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From the Blog

Apology Politics: From Redress to Comfort Women

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's visit to the United States reignited calls for Japan to issue an official apology to the surviving "comfort women" of WWII. Content Director Brian Niiya contributed a guest blog post explaining why he -- and Densho as a whole -- support these calls for an apology. "We too believe in the goal of a 'just history,' whether of the 'comfort women' or any other contested historical topic..."

>> Read the blog post

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Densho News

GiveBIG 2015

Last month we celebrated The Seattle Foundation's GiveBIG day, an annual one-day, online charitable giving event. Sixty-nine generous donors contributed $8,400 to Densho in this year's GiveBIG fundraising effort and we are sincerely thankful for that support.

New Book Chapter and Interview

Tom Ikeda contributed a chapter about Densho's efforts to digitally preserve the legacy of WWII Japanese American incarceration to the recently published book, Oral History and Digital Humanities: Voice, Access, and Engagement. As part of the process, the book's editors interviewed him about how Densho was started, its ongoing work, and the challenges the organization faces today.

>> Listen to the interview with Tom Ikeda

Upcoming Conferences

Executive Director Tom Ikeda will speak at this year's Minidoka Civil Liberties Symposium, June 24-25. This year's theme, "Citizenship: Rights and Responsibilities," will examine the roles and responsibilities of citizens and to present case studies of how individuals and organizations have responded to constitutional crisis, civil liberties and personal rights issues; and to bring focused discourse on the role of citizens when asked how they might participate in fostering a cultural of civic engagement. This symposium is brought to you by the partnership of the Friends of Minidoka, the Minidoka National Historic Site (National Park Service), Boise State University, and the ACLU of Idaho.

>> For more information

At the end of the month Caitlin Oiye, Densho's Photo and Document Collections Manager, will travel to Oakland to participate in the annual meeting of the Rare Books and Manuscripts Section (RBMS) of the Association of College and Research Libraries. She'll join archivists and scholars from the June L. Mazer Lesbian Archives, the University of Houston, and the University of California, Los Angeles in a panel discussion about the challenges and opportunities associated with the administration of community archives.

>> For more information

As part of our ongoing efforts to expand our digital outreach, Communications Manager Natasha Varner will attend the V3 Digital Media Conference at the Japanese American National Museum later this month. The conference, hosted by the Los Angeles Chapter of the Asian American Journalists Association, will feature presentations by and networking with AAPI online journalists, creative social media communicators, seasoned bloggers.

>> For more information

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