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Reinventing Citizenship: Black Los Angeles, Korean Kawasaki, and Community Participation


280 pages, paperback




April, 2014

Published by

University of Minnesota Press

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Reinventing Citizenship:

Japanese Page

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My book, Reinventing Citizenship: Black Los Angeles, Korean Kawasaki, and Community Participation, positions the case of the American Community Action Program (CAP), a core program of President Lyndon B. Johnson’s “War on Poverty,” in a transnational context by juxtaposing it with the case of the Japanese Model Community Program (MCP). I examine how local activists in both Los Angeles and Kawasaki forcefully challenged official welfare institutions, created oppositional discourses and movements, and voiced alternative visions of citizenship. While African American leaders addressed the inadequacies of the American welfare system from inside the welfare state and revised the New Deal legacy that reinforced racial and gender inequality, Koreans in Japan, who had been pushed outside the boundaries of citizenship and denied the right to welfare, contested the limited notion of citizenship and abolished the nationality clause. I also delineate the ways in which black theology and black freedom struggles were embraced and translated by Koreans in Japan. In so doing, I further document the interconnected and transnational histories of African Americans and zainichi Koreans in their pursuit of citizenship rights. The stories of both African American and zainichi Korean mobilization show why it is imperative for historians to explore comparative and relational histories of antiracist alliances.

(Written by Kazuyo Tsuchiya, Associate Professor, Graduate School of Arts and Sciences)

Table of Contents

Introduction: Los Angeles and Kawasaki as Arenas of Struggle over Citizenship
1. Between Inclusion and Exclusion: The Origins of the U.S. Community Action Program
2. Fostering Community and Nationhood: Japan's Model Community Program
3. Struggling for Political Voice: Race and the Politics of Welfare in Los Angeles
4. Recasting the Community Action Program: The Pursuit of Race, Class, and Gender Equality in Los Angeles
5. Translating Black Theology into Korean Activism: The Hitachi Employment Discrimination Trial
6. Voicing Alternative Visions of Citizenship: The "Kawasaki System" of Welfare
Conclusion: The Interconnectedness of Oppression and Freedom

Related Info

 [ (] "The TransPacific Struggle over Citizenship: Seeking Welfare Rights in Kawasaki City, Japan and Los Angeles, California, 1962-1982"
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Law, Culture and the Humanities 11, no.2 (June, 2015): 319-321

The American Historical Review 120, no. 4 (October, 2015): 1455–1456

Pacific Historical Review 85 no. 2 (May, 2016): 294-295

Journal of Urban History 43, no. 2 (March 2017): 372-378 ("Transnational Encounters: Immigration, Race, and Citizenship in Encountering Ellis Island, How Race Is Made in America, and Reinventing Citizenship")
Journal of Asian Studies 76, no. 3 (August 2017): 802-812 ("Remaking Japan through Transnational Encounters, Difference, and Struggles for Social Equality")

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