The mistreatment of Japanese Canadians during the 1940s has traditionally been understood in terms of a temporary, wartime internment. Drawing upon the conclusions of a major, national research project, UVIC Professor Jordan Stanger-Ross and Michael Abe argue in this presentation to the recent BCHF conference that the traditional perspective fails to capture the injustice done.
Instead, we should see this history as involving the deliberate and permanent destruction of home and community over the course of a decade. His talk will try to change how you think about the origins, unfolding, and legacies of Canada’s internment era, replacing a story of regrettable political action at a time of war with a history of deliberate harm and widespread accountability.
Stanger-Ross is a professor and the University of Victoria Provost’s Engaged Scholar, 2020-25. He is the director of Landscapes of Injustice, a seven-year multi-sector and community-engaged project to research and tell the history of the forced sale of Japanese-Canadian-owned property during the 1940s.
Michael Abe is a third generation (sansei) Japanese Canadian (Nikkei) and past president of the Victoria Nikkei Cultural Society. He was the project manager on Landscapes of Injustice.