Only What We Could Carry by Lawson Fusao Inada

Only What We Could Carry

An Important Classic in Heyday's California In the wake of wartime panic that followed the Japanese attack of Pearl Harbor, more than 100,000 Japanese Americans residing along the West Coast of the United States were uprooted from their homes and their communities and banished to internment camps throughout the country. Through personal documents, art, and propaganda, Only What We Could Carry expresses through words, art, and haunting recollectio...

Details Only What We Could Carry

TitleOnly What We Could Carry
Release DateAug 1st, 2000
GenreHistory, Nonfiction, Race, Poetry, War, World War II, Autobiography, Memoir, Historical, Cultural, Japan, Literature, American

Reviews Only What We Could Carry

  • Jimmy Newell
    This is a must read for anyone who plans to vote in the November 2016 election. Herding people into internment camps because they looked like our enemy? It happened. It was America's shame in WWII. Read this book so that it will not be our shame in the 21st Century.
  • Kim
    This is one of my favorite kinds of history books- it's basically a book of primary sources with some short context/explanatory essays. It includes oral histories, poetry, artwork, official documents, diaries and excerpts from memoirs of people who were affected by the Japanese Internment during World War II. Most of the material is from Japanese Americans, but there are accounts from people who worked in the camps, from people who were not Japan...
  • Shāfiya Mū
    4.25 outta 5.
  • Sarah Crawford
    This is an unusual book on the internment process, as it consists of information, but also includes poetry, artwork, photographs, and personal remembrances, making it a very fascinating work.The book starts right off noting that the U.S. suspended due process and put people of Japanese descent into what amounted to be prisons without any formal charges or trials, much less appeals. The book deals with the war years only.One very interesting secti...
  • Rebeka
    Only What We Could Carry is a collection of writings documenting the lives of the Japanese Issei (first generation immigrants), Nisei (second generation, American born), and Kibei (American born but educated in Japan). It includes short stories, memoirs, poetry, art, historical documents, letters, etc. Each piece of writing or art communicates to the audience the suffrage of people of Japanese descent during World War II. The book speaks of the i...
  • Lisa
    Of all the books that I have read concerning the internment of Japanese Americans this is the best and if you only have time to read one this should be it. Includes diary entries, personal essays, newspaper & magazine article reprints, reprints of cartons from this time, transcripts of speeches given by FDR & Eleanor Roosevelt. Of all the books that I have read concerning the internment of Japanese Americans this is the best and if you only hav...
  • Catherine
    Essays from residents of Japanese internment camps in WWII, as well as non-internees writing about their association and experiences. Many are excerpts from books. It took me more than two months to read this (there are about 50 essays, many of which had common elements). The editors included one or more paragraphs of background information for each one. Everyone had his or her own experience that was important and interesting. Some of the atypic...
  • Anastasia
    This is one of the best, most informative books I've read recently, and certainly an excellent way to learn more about the Japanese American internment experience. The book is a collection of essays, fiction, poetry, art, reproductions of propaganda, and memoir, from a surprisingly wide variety of people. Many "regular" Japanese American voices were represented, as well as leaders from the Japanese American community, anonymous entries, a liberat...
  • Steve Nichols
    The second half of the book becomes quite tedious as it becomes a compilation of numerous retellings of the experiences of the people interned in the camps. You read it anyway because, by then, you feel like you owe it to them. Of particular interest to me was section written by George Takei concerning his experience at one of the camps. Mr. Takei is none other than Mr. Sulu, of the original Star Trek TV series!
  • Michael
    Fantastic book shedding light on the dark history in Japanese-American life just after the bombing of Pearl Harbor. The documentation and remembrances from the people who lived it are unforgettable, inspiring, both heartbreaking and uplifting. If you are interested in history or humanities, then pick this up.
  • JLib
    Though I understand why it was needed, the technical parts of this book (official government documents, technical jargon) kind of 'killed my buzz', for lack of better wording. I found myself skipping through to the actual diary entries which I found much more intriguing and helped to paint a better picture of that time.
  • Ted Chen
    Nice collection of essays from former internees in Japanese Internment camps. Also includes essays from people who were not interned, but had contact with the camps. Good for any other history nerds out there.
  • Chris Antonsen
    This is a great collection of (reprinted) primary materials concerning 1940s American policies imprisoning Japanese and Japanese-Americans on American soil.
  • Preston
    no veteran should go without reading this one
  • Alan
    I collect books on Japanese internment. This one is OK, not a stand out for me.
  • Mariarosa
    This was a truly great source for history of this event. There were some inappropriate chapters, though, so one should be careful of the age of who he/she recommends it to.
  • Malialani
    A thorough, wide-ranging, illuminating and often disheartening anthology that uses many voices and methods, from essays and photos to poetry and artwork, to describe a panorama of facts and personal stories relating to the unconstitutional internment of mainland Japanese and Japanese Americans following the bombing of Pearl Harbor. Most of the essays are from interned Japanese but the volume includes writings from others, like faith workers or te...
  • Shawna
    Very interesting nonfiction collection on the Japanese Internment Experience.