DEPARTURES

Chronicling The Expulsion Of The Japanese Canadians From The West Coast 1942-1949

By John Endo Greenaway, Linda Kawamoto Reid, Fumiko Greenaway

204 pages

$19.95. Available at the museum shop, and Online Shop.

In 1942, over 22,000 Japanese Canadians, many of them Canadian-born or naturalized citizens, were labelled enemy aliens, forcibly rounded up, and processed through the cattle barns of Hastings Park before being shipped to road camps, internment camps in the interior of BC, sugar beet farms in Alberta and Manitoba, and POW camps in Ontario. They were not permitted to return to the west coast until 1949, three years after the war ended.

Using archival photos, the memories of survivors, recipes from the camps, artefacts, and poetry – tanka and haiku – the book presents a multi-dimensional portrait of a people forced from their homes and scattered across a country that did not want them.

Woven through the book are the voices of the sansei and yonsei – the third and fourth generations – offering echoes of those years that continue to resonate long after the last camp was closed down.

“This wonderful addition to the library of Japanese Canadian literature captures the feelings of despair and resilience of a community pulled from their homes and uprooted into prison and work camps in the BC interior and sugar beet farms on the prairies. This history is told through voices, photographs (over 100), haiku and other poems, and recipes. These are artfully woven together to tell a haunting and compelling story. A book that, once started, is impossible to put down, it is fun to read as well as being insightful and moving. It should reach a readership including, but far beyond, those of the Japanese Canadian community.”
  Judge Maryka Omatsu
  Author of Bittersweet Passage, Redress and the Japanese Canadian Experience

Departures-Book-Cover