Thursday, February 16, 2017
2:00pm – 3:15pm
STUDENT UNION Room 428
Reflections on Executive Order 9066 at 75 Guest Lecture by Greg Robinson Free and Open to the Public
Signed by Franklin D. Roosevelt on February 19, 1942, Executive Order 9066 ought to be equally committed to memory by every American with every remembrance of the bombing of Pearl Harbor.
EO 9066 authorized the unlawful removal and incarceration of 120,000 people of Japanese heritage — fully 2/3 of them U.S. citizens, Americans born in the U.S.A. — without due process of law. They were held in “internment camps” located on U.S. soil for the duration of World War II. It was not until February 19, 1976 that EO 9066’s authority was terminated by Proclamation 4417. And after twelve years of “breaking the silence” community organizing and public hearings before a bi-partisan commission, Ronald Reagan signed the Civil Liberties Act of 1988 – which acknowledged the “race prejudice, war hysteria and failure of political leadership” in its reparations and apology to the survivors of this regrettable period of U.S. history.
GREG ROBINSON is a native New Yorker and Professor of History at l'Université du Québec À Montréal (UQAM), a French-language institution in Montreal, Canada, with award-winning research in North American Ethnic Studies and U.S. Political History. He teaches courses on African American history, Twentieth-Century U.S. Foreign Policy, American Immigration History, and visible minorities/racial groups.
Robinson’s groundbreaking book, By Order of the President: FDR and the Internment of Japanese Americans (Harvard, 2001) is an in-depth history of the decisions behind the government’s mass removal and confinement of West Coast Japanese Americans during World War II and centers on the role of President Franklin D. Roosevelt. The book was voted a “Recommended Book for Understanding Civil Liberties” by the American Association of University Presses. His A Tragedy of Democracy: Japanese Confinement in North America, (Columbia University Press, 2009), winner of the 2009 History Book Prize of the Association for Asian American Studies, follows up as a transnational history of the wartime confinement throughout North America – offering newly uncovered material that extends existing accounts and breaks new ground by studying the treatment of ethnic Japanese in Canada, Mexico, and Latin America. And in 2012, After Camp: Portraits in Midcentury Japanese American Life and Politics (University of California Press) covers the years following World War II, with essays on resettlement and dispersal, assimilation, and relations with other racial and ethnic minority groups. Professor Robinson’s 2016 publications include The Great Unknown: Japanese American Sketches and Minority Relations: Intergroup Conflict and Cooperation edited with Robert S. Chang.
Sponsors: Asian/Asian American Studies Institute and the Asian American Cultural Center.
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