THE INTERNMENT OF JAPANESE AMERICANS DURING WORLD WAR II: A CASE STUDY OF NATIONAL TRAUMA AND INSTITUTIONAL VIOLENCE

  • Ridwan Laher
  • Arthur G. Neal

Abstract

The events set in motion by the Japanese bombing of Pearl Harbour wereamong the more consequential events in the history of the world (Toland, 1982).The subsequent development of the atomic bomb and its use at Hiroshima andNagasaki permanently changed the conditions under which men and women live(Selden and Selden, 1989) and provided a dramatic illustration of what humanbeings are capable of doing to each other (Lifton and Markusen, 1988). Theimmediate effects of the surprise attack on the United States (US) were traumatic asthe nation entered a war for which it was not prepared. The long range-effectsinclude the imprinting of the surprise attack in collective memories and a nationaldetermination by the US to never again be caught unprepared militarily (Neal,2005). Both political leaders and journalists drew upon the memories of PearlHarbour as they attempted to make sense out of the surprise terrorist attack ofSeptember 11, 2001 (9/11), and to mobilize the nation for an effective response.
Published
2011-08-03
Section
Articles