Definitive Hapa Japan Books To Launch In LA

Posted in Articles, Asian Diaspora, History, Media Archive, United States on 2017-02-26 23:37Z by Steven

Definitive Hapa Japan Books To Launch In LA

Kaya Press
Los Angeles, California

Kaya Press is thrilled to announce the official publication of Hapa Japan: History Vol. 1 and Hapa Japan: History Vol. 2 edited by Duncan Ryūken Williams.

Described by Ruth Ozeki as “essential reading for all citizens of our transcultural, transnational, boundless, borderless, beautifully mixed-up world,” these volumes bring together scholarship on the rich historical and contemporary experiences and representations of global Hapa Japanese…

Read the entire press release here.

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Hapa Japan: History (Volume 1)

Posted in Anthologies, Asian Diaspora, Books, History, Media Archive on 2017-02-26 21:59Z by Steven

Hapa Japan: History (Volume 1)

Kaya Press
500 pages
Paperback ISBN: 9781885030535

Edited by:

Duncan Ryūken Williams, Associate Professor of Religion and East Asian Languages and Cultures
University of Southern California

The history and experiences of mixed-race Japan have long remained almost invisible in a country that believes in its own myths of homogeneity, despite a history that extends backwards to the 8th-century emperor Kammu Tenno (who was part Korean) through to Japan’s first female physician (part German) during the 19th century, and forward to the present day, when 1 of every 30 Japanese babies are born to families with one non-Japanese parent. Hapa Japan: History (Volume 1) is the first substantial collection of essays to survey the history of global mixed-race identities of persons of Japanese descent. Edited by Duncan Ryuken Williams, the founder of the Hapa Japan Database Project, this groundbreaking work unsettles binary and simplistic notions of race by making visible the complex lives of individuals often written out of history.

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Tufts Hapa reaches out to mixed-race students

Posted in Articles, Campus Life, New Media, United States on 2012-10-03 23:11Z by Steven

Tufts Hapa reaches out to mixed-race students

The Tufts Daily: The Independent student newspaper of Tufts University
Medford, Massachusetts

Alexandria Chu

Among the more than 300 student organizations at Tufts, there are many geared toward specific ethnicities and cultures. Tufts Hapa, a new group on campus, is working to become the only one intended to represent mixed race students.

In 2000, the United States Census was changed to allow citizens to check multiple boxes of racial identification, and the 2010 Census showed a 28 percent increase in interracial households. Tufts Hapa hopes to reflect these changes on campus.

Tufts Hapa aims to create a community of mixed race peoples of part Asian descent, according to President Joseph Wat, a senior. The club is currently in the process of receiving recognition by the Tufts Community Union (TCU) and has the support of the Asian American Center.

Tufts Hapa executive board member and senior Stephanie Howell explained that the start of her involvement in Tufts Hapa stemmed from the instability of past multiracial organizations on campus…

…Tufts Hapa’s faculty support, Assistant Professor of Economics Arthur Chiang, commented on the difficulty of achieving the balance between maintaining pride in ethnicity and solely defining oneself by it, which is particularly tricky for people of a mixed-race heritage.

“I think the basis of [your] social life shouldn’t be based on your race … It’s certainly a concern, everyone just fracturing into their own little [ethnic] groups. Of course, at the same time, no matter what background you have, you should feel some pride in your culture,” Chiang said. “It’s a little bit harder if you’re mixed, so I think a good thing for this club is the celebration of Hapa culture. It’s not an exclusionary thing, but more about learning about our experiences.”…

…Professor of History Gary Leupp notes a feeling of alienation throughout the history of people of mixed-race descent. He gives an example of an epitaph written in 1680 by Pieter Hartsinck, the son of a Dutch merchant and a Japanese woman.

According to Leupp, the epitaph is in St. Jakob’s Church in Osterode, Lower Saxony, Germany, detailing that Hartsinck and his mother were born in the East and his father in Europe.

Leupp quoted Hartsinck, “My destiny varied from the beginning … I left my homeland early in life to find my father’s country. But I could not find my true home.” Leupp explained that Hartsinck accomplished much in his life, even translating Descartes’ work into Latin from French, but his identity struggles are evident in his epitaph…

Read the entire article here.

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Hapa Japan Conference

Posted in Asian Diaspora, Live Events, Media Archive, United States on 2011-03-06 04:41Z by Steven

Hapa Japan Conference

Center for Japanese Studies
Institute of East Asian Studies
University of California, Berkeley
2011-04-08 through 2011-04-09


Hapa is a Hawaiian term that is now widely used to describe someone of mixed racial or ethnic heritage. A New York Times article cites that just within the United States, one in seven marriages are now between people from different racial/ethnic backgrounds.

The Center for Japanese Studies, along with the Hapa Japan Database Project and All Nippon Airways, will host the Hapa Japan Conference on April 8th and 9th, featuring specialists in the study of mixed-race Japanese history, identity, and representation. Topics range from the history of mixed-race Japanese in the 1500s, part-Japanese communities in Australia, to the exploration of identity and representation through story-telling, films, and a photo-exhibit. For more information, please reference the conference agenda or contact

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