In this unit, we will study the Japanese internment during World War II. Now you have the chance to do some research and put together what you discover into a short essay. Conduct research to find accounts of internment written by Japanese Americans who were interned at an American internment camp. Also, do general research about the camps themselves. Here are the questions you need to research:
1. What was life like for Japanese Americans before coming to the camp?
2. What did they lose when they were forced to relocate?
3. What were their thoughts and feelings about Executive Order 9066?
4. What were conditions like for internees in the camp?
5. When the internment ended, did the Japanese return to their homes? Businesses?
6. What is your impression of the camp?
7. What types of things were in the news about this camp or the internment camps in general?
8. Were there any events in the news that related to this camp?
9. Write a brief description about your feelings on the camp. Do you sympathize with the internees or not? Tell why or why not.
10. What were the arguments both for and against the policies of the U.S. government relating to the camps?
11. Was there a better alternative to the internment?
Write a five-paragraph essay answering all these questions.
Here’s a list of U.S. internment camps to get you started. You may choose one from this list or pick one of your own that interests you. Be sure you choose a camp that has enough information available to write a good essay.
- Gila River War Relocation Center, Arizona
- Granada War Relocation Center, Colorado (AKA “Amache”)
- Heart Mountain War Relocation Center, Wyoming
- Jerome War Relocation Center, Arkansas
- Manzanar War Relocation Center, California
- Minidoka War Relocation Center, Idaho
- Poston War Relocation Center, Arizona
- Rohwer War Relocation Center, Arkansas
Topaz War Relocation Center, Utah
Tule Lake War Relocation Center, California