By Shelley Sang-Hee Lee
In Claiming the Oriental Gateway, Shelley Sang-Hee Lee explores some of the intersections of urbanization, ethnic id, and internationalism within the adventure of eastern americans in early twentieth-century Seattle. She examines the improvement and self-image of the town by means of documenting how U.S. enlargement, Asian trans-Pacific migration, and internationalism have been manifested locallyoand how those forces affected citizens' relationships with each other and their atmosphere. Lee info the numerous function jap Americansoboth immigrants and U.S. born citizensoplayed within the social and civic lifetime of town as a method of turning into American. Seattle embraced the assumption of cosmopolitanism and boosted its position as a cultural and advertisement "Gateway to the Orient" even as it restricted the ways that Asian american citizens may perform the general public faculties, neighborhood paintings construction, civic celebrations, and activities. She additionally appears at how Japan inspired the concept of the "gateway" in its participation within the Alaska-Yukon-Pacific Exposition and overseas Potlach. Claiming the Oriental Gateway hence deals an illuminating examine of the "Pacific period" and trans-Pacific kinfolk within the first 4 a long time of the 20 th century.
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Additional info for Claiming the Oriental Gateway: Prewar Seattle and Japanese America (Asian American History & Culture)
Claiming the Oriental Gateway builds on the literature exploring Japanese American duality while bringing to the discussion a consideration of place, proposing that Japanese Americans residing in West Coast cities developed unique and pronounced investments in Japan’s international standing while viewing themselves as inhabitants of and players in the Pacific world. 35 Claiming the Oriental Gateway also situates itself in relation to an expanding literature in American history that understands West Coast cities as paradoxes.
Practically no single-family homes were in the area south of Yesler; instead, one found there residential hotels, shacks, and union housing facilities for sailors and longshoremen. 18 As the city grew out of its original boundaries, newer sections came to be regarded as the genteel neighborhoods, while the area south of Yesler would be seen as a self-contained section of urban disorder. From the turn of the twentieth century onward, parts of Skid Row extended eastward and were increasingly racialized.
The establishment of a Japanese Language School in 1902, Kokugo Gakko, ensured that American-born children retained the ancestral language and roots, although the school’s curriculum also consisted of American citizenship training. M u lt i e t h n ic Se at t l eâ•… 35 Finally, organizations aimed at advancing the political interests of Japanese in America and improving their group standing in mainstream American society were formed in Seattle. These included the Japanese Association of America, the Japanese American Citizens League (JACL), and the Japanese Women’s Progressive Club.