Jeannie Shinozuka discusses the history of Japanese Immigration and American Relations

Shinozuka EventOn September 11, Dr. Jeannie Shinozuka discussed her forthcoming book From a Contagious to a Poisonous Yellow Peril: Japanese and Japanese Americans in Public Health and Agriculture, 1890s-1950.  “In the early twentieth century, government officers and the mass media demonized mutually constitutive Japanese beetles and bodies as deadly yellow perils. The Japanese beetle, second-generation Japanese Americans, and the Asiatic farmer transformed anti-Asian and anti-immigration policies during the early twentieth century. The metaphor of Japanese immigrants as invaders formed the central vehicle that dehumanized them and persuaded the larger American public that these foreigners ought to be eradicated. Their increasing presence occurred as the United States grappled with the problem of dealing with those aliens inside its borders. The story of Japanese insect, plant, and human immigrants is not simply one of inclusion–exclusion or even colonizer–colonized.” (Deadly Perils: Japanese Beetles and the Pestilential Immigrant, 1920 – 1930,” American Quarterly, vol. 65, no. 4 (Winter 2013): 521-542.)

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