Graduation Date

Fall 12-31-2015

Grading Professor

Prue Clarke

Subject Concentration


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


Brazil is home to the largest Japanese community outside of Japan. Since the first dispatch of Japanese immigrants in 1908, more than 240,000 people moved from Japan to Brazil between the early 1900s and the 1970s. Many of them settled outside the city of São Paulo and started working as coffee farmers under unfamiliar and harsh conditions. Today, according to some estimates, more than 1.6 million people of Japanese descent live in Brazil.

As Japan became the world’s economic power, it sought foreign workers to fill its booming labor market. The government turned to Japanese Brazilians and started granting them temporary visas in 1990. More than 170,000 Japanese-Brazilian workers and their family members now live in Japan. In this highly homogeneous country, many of them face discrimination and have trouble assimilating into society.

This is the story of three generations of Japanese Brazilians.

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