[Reading] ➿ Stubborn Twig: Three Generations in the Life of a Japanese American Family ➶ Lauren Kessler – Dailytradenews.co.uk


10 thoughts on “Stubborn Twig: Three Generations in the Life of a Japanese American Family

  1. says:

    Every Oregonian should read Stubborn Twig It is the history of a Japanese American family, largely based in Hood River, starting with the father s coming to the U.S., landing at Seattle, in 1910 The author charts not only the course of this family s history, but also the course of Japanese Americans in the United States generally, focused on Hood River It is well written and fascinating It s a bit of history everyone should know about, from the xenophobia and racism to the internment during WWII.


  2. says:

    The internal fortitude and courage forged by this family facing injustices from many angles easy to become embittered and want to leave, not be a part of a oft tilted system toward non ethnics.Hood River Fruit Loop excelled as farmers and at their craft Were vanguards in technique too The title is so apropos of their fighting , indomitable spirit that refused to be broken For some rwaonC this awesome amazing story reminds me of Hillebrand s Unbroken


  3. says:

    I attended Concordia Academy in Portland Oregon, at that time a Lutheran boarding highschool A roommate from Idaho said he could remember begging for berries along the barbed wire fence of an internment camp there He would have been born in 1935 or 1936 and have been seven at the time of the internment I, of course, said, Internment, what internment In my senior year, we played Hood River Highscool in football I believe it was the only game we won that year I would like to go back over their roster to see if any Japanese Americans played in that game.Hood River has often been the stop off point on trips to see my brother in southwest Washington and on business trips to Pendleton Oregon One of my favorite seminary classmates also lived there.At one time I was going to write an article on the internment and researched Oregon newspapers so I ve been aware for some time that Hood River was a hotbed of anti Japanese feeling in Oregon, and as it turns out, in the entire country.While reading a hard copy I discovered this book is available as a free down load so I am going to finish it that way The reader knows how to pronounce the names correctly.


  4. says:

    This book was a fascinating read A true look into the lives of those effected by the evacuation order during WW II The book is painfully beautiful The narrative keeps you coming back for I found myself alternately intrigued, angered, disheartened, heartened, pleased, and thoughtful about how the family s life unfolded Sprinkle in a bit of righteous indignation and you ve got the feel of the book It leaves you questioning How would you have reacted if you were there then If you were Caucasian of German decent of Japanese decent What would you have done if you were the President of the United States Would it change how you treat your neighbors know the President of the United States didn t want them here, didn t trust them Would you have the courage like Smith to say no Maybe it is in the answers to those questions that the power of this book truly lies For, if we don t learn from the pastwe are doomed to repeat it And that can not and should not happen.


  5. says:

    A riveting story and an important piece of Oregon s history.


  6. says:

    Heart wrenching, superbly written account of the racial bigotry, lying, hatred, and jealousy of white America, with a focus on Hood River, OR, in the years before the Japanese invasion of Pearl Harbor, that was behind the real reason government studies reported the American Japanese were not a threat for Roosevelt s and government s internment of the American Japanese Using a true family with family interviews with good historical research this is a detailed accounting of the impact on each individual their successes even with their trials with hatred and jealousy that they experienced Then the most detailed, tear jerking account of what each individual in the family encountered with the government s curfew, travel, and internment policies Daughter a senior at the U of O being the sole lonely individual late at night watching the train pass by that carried her family from Hood River South to internment with only what they could carry Plus the government s denial to let her break curfew 8pm to attend her own graduation over at 10pm followed by her eventual escape, via a midnight bus, to Colorado And of course, detailed descriptions of what the camps were like down to the fact that the latrines had no doors so the ladies tried to only go at night rather than in full few of the whole camp Putting up cardboard to protect their straw self stuffed mattresses from the leaking melting tar of the poorly constructed small one room family units , plus the horrible day heat and freezing night conditions of the desert intermixed with their unsuccessful efforts to stop the stealing of their properties and loss of 30 years of hard work Good conclusion on the continued racism, bigotry and discrimination in Hood River following the few returning Japanese and the results of all of the above plus 2 suicides and resultant Diaspora on the subsequent children and grandchildren.


  7. says:

    I found this book worthwhile because I hadn t known many details about the treatment of Japanese Americans during World War II For example, I had always pictured the internment camps as reasonably nice places where families at least stayed together.As part of a community reading program celebrating Oregon s 150th birthday, everyone in Oregon is being invited to read this book this year If you already know your WWII history, you re going to have to care A LOT about the one family featured, because, true to its subtitle, that s all the book is about The family was interesting in their way by the time of WWII they had amassed a fortune in Hood River But the book is dry in many places the author seems to have wanted to use every scrap of her research, such as listing every school year activity of all 8 of the second generation children Also, it s weirdly organized it s divided into 3 sections, one per generation, so that inevitably some of the material is repetitive.Still, people in the Pacific Northwest, particularly, will appreciate some of the tidbits Kessler shares For example, one of the worries after Pearl Harbor was that Japanese frogmen would invade the US by disguising themselves as salmon and swimming up the Columbia In case all you ever read is this review, please know that no Japanese American was ever convicted of espionage during WWII.


  8. says:

    As a 3rd generation Oregonian, I love to read about the REAL history of Oregon Lauren Kessler presented this story so thoroughly and heart felt, I was caught from the first chapter My children are Gosei, 5th generation Japanese American Their grandfather Tanikawa and his family were sent to an internment camp when he was in late middle school As in this book, his grandfather arrived in Seattle around 1901 His father fought in World War I They had a productive life in this country prior to 1942 When Pearl Harbor was attacked, they were instantly perceived as enemies, losing their American citizenship, possessions, and a sense of family structure and community Hearing how this impacted future generations, made me aware of how my husband and children are a legacy of this experience Sad to learn that of all minorities are the least likely to marry within their race, possibly due to the abrupt rejection of their racial identity In rural Oregon, my children need friendships and family within the Japanese community Thinking of ways to bring awareness and connection into our community as well as traveling to Eugene often to participate in activities.


  9. says:

    This book spoke to me of the underlying history of Japanese residents of Hood Rivernear here Thanks to you LauraK for his very articulate and detailed research


  10. says:

    All Americans should read this book I ve rarely been so engaged in a non fiction work as I was in Stubborn Twig First of all, it s a compelling story of a remarkable, only in America kind of Japanese immigrant, Masuo Yasui Yasui immigrated to Portland, worked on the railroad in the intermountain west, learned English, converted to Christianity, and settled in Hood River to be an extremely successful entrepreneur and orchardist While his story is singular, the author is careful not to go into hagiography With excellent contextualization of both PNW history and Japanese culture particularly for the issei and nisei , Kessler uses lots of primary sources to provide a balanced view of a hard working outsider and respected local cultural informant who was as distant and authoritarian toward his children as he was connected and essential within his community.Through Depression, increasing anti Japanese sentiment, and shameful legislation, the Yasui family prospers through diligence and exceptionalism The barriers the family broke could be equated to the integration firsts of the Civil Rights movement Then, the war came The Yasuis were wrenched apart through internment, civil disobedience, and flight east to avoid the forcible removal of Japanese Americans during WWII Min Yasui son 3 goes down in history for his legal challenge of the executive orders restricting Japanese Americans he gets arrested for breaking curfew whilst trying to report for military service he was already a commissioned officer The first Japanese American admitted to the Oregon bar, his civil disobedience and arrest goes all the way to the Supreme Court.Most mindblowing two factoids that stick out 1 Earl Warren is on the circuit court of appeals for Yasui v U.S He doesn t find for Yasui no wonder Eisenhower thought he was a sure bet as chief justice It s ironic then that a decade later Warren transforms into the civil rights judge, bringing in a unanimous Brown v Board in his first year on the Supreme Court 2 American GIs who had served alongside the nisei in Europe were among the most vocal protesters of the internment and anti Japanese discrimination along the west coast I guess there s another story of the armed forces integrating ahead of the rest of us One of the great strengths of the book is in the author s ability to weave the generations together and keep all the actors 9 kids straight while still keeping the story relatively chronological and sensible You can get slivers of insight about the future without spoiling the next generation s story.This is a masterful, compelling, and deeply moving story Run to your library and request it now I mean this in the most positive, Anne Fadiman esque use of the word.


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  • Paperback
  • 320 pages
  • Stubborn Twig: Three Generations in the Life of a Japanese American Family
  • Lauren Kessler
  • English
  • 15 April 2018
  • 9780875952963