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Thursday 20 June 2019 9.00 - 10.30
A-1 GLM26 Regulating Race, Work, and Migration in the U.S. Empire
Netlau
Chair: Naoko Shibusawa Organizer: Julie Greene
Discussant: Naoko Shibusawa
Eiichiro Azuma : Japanese Agricultural Labor Program: Guest Worker Importation, Cold War Cultural Diplomacy, and the Politics of Race among Japanese Americans
This paper looks into the complex political entanglements that gave birth to the Japanese Short-Term Agricultural Worker Program in California between 1956 and 1965. A local impetus for the importation of short-term Japanese workers came from Japanese American farmers, who desired to use them to offset the Mexican labor ... (Show more)
This paper looks into the complex political entanglements that gave birth to the Japanese Short-Term Agricultural Worker Program in California between 1956 and 1965. A local impetus for the importation of short-term Japanese workers came from Japanese American farmers, who desired to use them to offset the Mexican labor “problem.” These farmers were simultaneously compelled to construct an ethnic identity distinct from foreign Japanese in order to defend their integral position in postwar/interment America. This politics of ethnic identity intersected with Cold War US public diplomacy and postwar Japan’s complicity with it, where labor importation was treated as a de facto study-abroad program for democratizing rural Japanese through their firsthand experience in California. Japanese America served as a vital link in the collaborations between California’s agri-business interests, US officials, and Tokyo elites, that devised this little-known guest worker program—one that reveals a lot more than the mobility of exploitable workers. (Show less)

Moon-Ho Jung : Imagining a Red Pacific: Anticolonialism, Anticommunism, and the U.S. Empire
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Mary Lui : Onieta of the Arks: Overlapping Labor Migrations of Asian Agricultural Workers and Female Sex Workers in Early 20th Century California
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