David Guterson's Snow Falling on Cedars The beginning of World War II caused many Americans to spawn a deep hatred against anyone of Japanese decent. Following the bombing of Pearl Harbor in 1941, fear of the Japanese emerged in hearts all across America. White Americans felt threatened by Japan. The fear of Japan created a fear of its people and this fear created severe prejudice against anyone who looked like the “enemy.” During the war, and for many years after, Japanese Americans were victims of this fear. In the fictional novel Snow Falling on Cedars by David Guterson, Kabuo Miyamoto is an example of this victimization.
It sits there like a jagged scar, massive, on the massive landscape. It lies there like the rusted wire of a twisted and remembered fence. As Inada points out with his analogy to a constellation, the United States government had constructed many camps and scattered them all over the country. In other words, the internment of Japanese-Americans was not merely a blip in American history; it was instead a catastrophic and appalling forced remov... ... middle of paper ... ...bstone Publishing Company, 1983. Matsura, Artist.
David Guterson's Snow Falling on Cedars Snow Falling on Cedars, a novel written by David Guterson, depicts the struggles that many Japanese-Americans faced in our country throughout World War II. Though the events and characters in this novel are fictional, the manor in which they were treated was not. Ever since the tragedy of December 7, the bombing of Pearl Harbor, Japanese people throughout the United States were seen as traitors through the eyes of Americans. Every Japanese, whether or not they were a natural born citizen or an illegal alien, were all treated as a possible threat to the safety and well being of the United States. Kabuo Miyamoto, the Japanese American put on trial for murder, had endure this harsh reality of racism that plagued his town and saturated the court system giving him no chance for a fair and just trial.
This island is home to Japanese strawberry farmers and one-man gillnetting boats. This novel is based around the murder trial of Carl Heine Jr. The accused man is Kabuo Miyamoto, a Japanese gill-netter as well as a World War II veteran. By non-fiction facts, from historical documents, and fiction facts from the novel itself, Kabuo Miyamoto was accused solely because of his race. On December 7, 1941, aircraft of the Imperial Japanese Navy attacked the United States naval base at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii.
People argued that it was acceptable because the Japanese immigrants in the United States posed a threat, but in reality, “more than two-thirds of the Japanese who were interned in the spring of 1942 were citizens of the United States” (Ross). The Nikkei had the same rights as any American born citizen, yet they were interned. The public concluded that all people of Japanese ancestry were saboteurs, heightening racial prejudices. Furthermore, the accusation of disloyalty among Japanese Americans prompted the state department to send Agent Curtis B. Munson to investigate this matter among the Japanese Americans; leading to his conclusion that, “there is no Japanese problem on the west coast…a rem... ... middle of paper ... ...tional Historic Site. nps.com.
The victim of western United States injustice was nearly anyone with Japanese ancestry. The novel’s story revolves around Kabuo Miyamoto, a Japanese-American man on trial for the death of a white man, Carl Heine. Historic evidence proves that a fair trial would be exceedingly difficult to create: Kabuo was presumed guilty solely on the fact that he was of the Japanese populace. In history, the immediate aftermath of Pearl Harbor on the western coast was detrimental to the Japanese people living in the United States in the region. White Americans were fearful of future attacks.
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