Racism Then And Now Essay

877 words - 4 pages

The Buddha in the Attic is an emotional novel written by Julie Otsuka in 2011. The novel is unique in the sense that it is written in the first person plural in order to tell the story of many characters simultaneously. There isn’t a set plot except for the chronological stories of multiple picture brides coming to America in the early 1900’s. Each chapter serves as a major section in the women’s lives and assimilation into American culture. The first chapter is titled “Come, Japanese”, which focuses on why the women are coming to America. They describe the decision, sometimes forced, and journey to come to America to meet their new husbands. Many did not necessarily want to come, but they ...view middle of the document...

It starts in the chapter titled “Traitors” and it details the scare that many Japanese-Americans were spies or informants or somehow against the United States government. There were rumors of lists of people who were targeted and also cases of disappearances of the Japanese. This situation changed the wives’ perspectives on their husbands, going from wanting to be saved or rescued to now holding their husband’s closer than ever, hoping they do not get taken, due to their support and stability. The chapter goes into describing the anxiety families faced as they kept hearing rumors of disappearances getting closer and closer to their husbands as well as not knowing where they were at all times. The chapter then details the announcement of the internment camps that Japanese-Americans were forced to go to as a precautionary measure. Since they were only allowed to take what they could carry, families were forced to sell basically everything they had quickly as well as abandon their farms and houses. The final chapter changes perspectives, starting to speak from the American viewpoint after the Japanese have left, “The Japanese have disappeared from our town. Their houses are boarded up and empty now. Their mailboxes have begun to overflow” (116). The chapter goes on to tell different reactions to the Japanese being sent off, as well as the mayor’s words, “The Japanese are in a safe place…We’ll let you know what we can when we can…There will be...

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