Since the late 1980s, Brazilians of Japanese descent have been "return" migrating to Japan as unskilled foreign workers. With an immigrant population currently estimated at roughly 280,000, Japanese Brazilians are now the second largest group of foreigners in Japan. Although they are of Japanese descent, most were born in Brazil and are culturally Brazilian. As a result, they have become Japan's newest ethnic minority.Drawing upon close to two years of multisite fieldwork in Brazil and Japan, Takeyuki Tsuda has written a comprehensive ethnography that examines the ethnic experiences and reactions of both Japanese Brazilian immigrants and their native Japanese hosts. In response to their socioeconomic marginalization in their ethnic homeland, Japanese Brazilians have strengthened their Brazilian nationalist sentiments despite becoming members of an increasingly well-integrated transnational migrant community. Although such migrant nationalism enables them to resist assimilationist Japanese cultural pressures, its challenge to Japanese ethnic attitudes and ethnonational identity remains inherently contradictory.
Strangers in the Ethnic Homeland illuminates how cultural encounters caused by transnational migration can reinforce local ethnic identities and nationalist discourses.
Preface: The Japanese Brazilians as Immigrant Celebrities Acknowledgments Introduction: Ethnicity and the Anthropologist: Negotiating Identities in the Field Part 1. Minority Status 1. When Minorities Migrate: The Japanese Brazilians as Positive Minorities in Brazil and Their Return Migration to Japan 2. From Positive to Negative Minority: Ethnic Prejudice and "Discrimination" Toward the Japanese Brazilians in Japan Part 2. Identity 3. Migration and Deterritorialized Nationalism: The Ethnic Encounter with the Japanese and the Development of a Minority Counteridentity 4. Transnational Communities Without a Consciousness? Transnational Connections, National Identities, and the Nation-State Part 3. Adaptation 5. The Performance of Brazilian Counteridentities: Ethnic Resistance and the Japanese Nation-State 6. "Assimilation Blues": Problems Among Assimilation-Oriented Japanese Brazilians Conclusion: Ethnic Encounters in the Global Ecumene Epilogue: Caste or Assimilation? The Future Minority Status and Ethnic Adaptation of the Japanese Brazilians in Japan
"A thorough job of scholarship. However, what makes this lively reading is Tsuda's description about the lives of immigrants and the Japanese who interacted with them." -- Chizu Omori, Pacific Reader "...encyclopedic, and for anyone venturing on a serious study of the Brazilian Nikkeijin in Japan in the future, it will be a resource bible." -- Daniela DeCarvalho, Journal of Japanese Studies " Strangers in the Ethnic Homeland raises important questions that urge us to think about ethnic and national identities in new ways." -- Aya Ezawa, American Journal of Sociology
"This is the book all of us interested in the comparative study of immigration have been waiting for. It is a masterpiece work of exquisite ethnographic detail, theoretical excellence, and conceptual maturity written by a cosmopolitan intellectual. Tsuda's ethnographic empathy, uncanny sense for place and mood, and well-channeled interdisciplinary impulses suggests to me that this book will set the standard for all subsequent anthropological work on immigration in Japan." -- Marcelo M. Suarez-Orozco, Victor S. Thomas Professor of Education at Harvard and co-director of the Harvard Immigration Projects "A path-breaking study of the ethnic Japanese-Brazilians... This will be a wonderful teaching book." -- Wayne Cornelius, director, Center for Comparative Immigration Studies, University of California-San Diego "A noteworthy addition to studies in labor migration that sets new standards." -- George A De Vos, Professor Emeritus, department of anthropology, University of California at Berkeley "This is an inquiry into some of the more elusive aspects of migration. The book is particularly effective in showing how migrants constitute their identities in ways that do not fit in either country of origin or destination and how these evolving identities themselves contribute to reproduce migration. A brilliant study!" -- Saskia Sassen, author of Guests and Aliens
Takeyuki Tsuda is the associate director of the Center for Comparative Immigration Studies at the University of California at San Diego.