Born in the USA: A Story of Japanese America, 1889-1947 Book Summary and Study Guide

Detailed plot synopsis reviews of Born in the USA: A Story of Japanese America, 1889-1947

Chinese-American playwright and novelist Frank Chin has taken up the cause of Japanese-Americans imprisoned during the Second World War who protested the violation of their rights and were punished for it. The book starts out with somewhat random accounts of life on the West Coast for immigrants just before and after the turn of the 20th century, with the lyrics of racist pop songs and novels sprinkled in. In this it resembles a sort of scrapbook. But the book gathers focus and momentum as Chin gets to the crux of his story: the attempts of Japanese-Americans to stand up for their rights, centered in the Heart Mountain, Wyoming internment camp, and the efforts of fellow Japanese-Americans, mostly members of the fledgling Japanese American Citizens League, to inform on them to the FBI and help weed out the "troublemakers." Chin regards this behavior as an ongoing blot on the record of the JACL, and his highly advocatory account seeks redemption for those he regards as "true Americans" who stood up to their government rather than help it to pursue injustice.
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The review of this Book prepared by David Loftus

Chapter Analysis of Born in the USA: A Story of Japanese America, 1889-1947

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Kind Of History

Time of history:    -   1940's    -   20th century History of disaster/tragedy?    -   Yes History of a people?    -   Yes Nationality?    -   Japanese

Subjects of this Historical Account

Ethnicity (if plays a major part)    -   Asiatic Is the portrayal sympathetic?    -   Somewhat sympathetic


United States    -   Yes The US:    -   West    -   Pacific NW    -   California Farm/Ranch:    -   farm Farms/Ranches?    -   Yes

Writing Style

How much gore?    -   2 () How fast-paced is the book?    -   3 () Accounts of torture and death?    -   generic/vague references to death/punishment Book makes you feel...    -   thoughtful How much focus on stories of individuals?    -   Focuses on brief history of a lot of players How much romance?    -   1 () Minor characters feature lots of:    -   lawyer creatures Is this a kid's book?    -   Ages 16-Adult Pictures/Illustrations?    -   A handful Length of book    -   400-450 pages How much emphasis on small details?    -   4 ()

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