In-Person Event (recording available after)
Saturday, May 11 @ 2pm
Seattle Central Library: 1000 4th Ave, Seattle, WA 98104

Satsuki Ina was born in the Tule Lake Concentration Camp and has dedicated much of her life to helping the Japanese American community heal from WWII incarceration – and to fighting to ensure that no other group is subjected to such harm. Ina will present her moving new memoir, The Poet and the Silk Girl: A Memoir of Love, Imprisonment, and Protest (Heyday Books, March 2024), in which she recovers the story of how her parents survived and resisted their incarceration in U.S. concentration camps. Drawing from diary entries, heart-wrenching haiku, censored letters, government documents, and clandestine messages, Ina shares the eyewitness dispatches of Shizuko and her newlywed husband Itaru. Their words, interwoven with the ravel of war and Ina’s own retrospective reflection, afford an intimate view into the experiences of those whose lives were upended, by reason of race alone, by Executive Order 9066. She will be joined in conversation by Tom Ikeda, founding executive director of Densho. 

Co-presented by Seattle JACL and Tsuru for Solidarity. Support for this event is provided by 4Culture and the City of Seattle Office of Arts & Culture.

Presenter bios:

Satsuki Ina is a psychotherapist specializing in community trauma. She helps victims of oppression to claim not only their voice but also their power to transform the systems that have oppressed them. Her activism has included co-founding Tsuru for Solidarity, a nonviolent, direct-action project of Japanese American social justice advocates working to end detention sites. Ina has produced two documentaries about the World War II incarceration of Japanese Americans, Children of the Camps and From a Silk Cocoon. She has been featured in the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, TIME, Democracy Now! and the documentary And Then They Came for Us. A professor emeritus at California State University, Sacramento, she lives in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Tom Ikeda is the Founding Executive Director of Densho and currently acting as a Senior Advisor. Tom is a sansei (third generation Japanese American) who was born and raised in Seattle. Tom’s parents and grandparents were incarcerated during World War II at Minidoka, Idaho. In addition to leading the organization over the last 24 years, Tom has conducted more than 250 video-recorded, oral history interviews with Japanese Americans. Prior to working at Densho, Tom was a General Manager at Microsoft Corporation in the Multimedia Publishing Group. Tom has received numerous awards for his community and historical contributions, including the Humanities Washington Award for outstanding achievement in the public humanities, the National JACL Japanese American of the Biennium Award, the Microsoft Alumni Integral Fellows Award, the Japanese American National Museum Founder’s Award, and the Robert Gray Medal from the Washington State Historical Society.