The Power of Our Stories: The Fight for Civil Liberties in the Japanese American Community and Beyo
(2:00 PM-4:00 PM)
Location: Downtown Branch
We invite you to gather at the Downtown Branch of the Santa Cruz Public Libraries to engage in a discussion of California civil liberties history from the days of slavery to the post 9/11 era, highlighting courageous Californians whose battles in courts, classrooms and streets shaped the rights we have today. When Elaine Elinson and Stan Yogi, authors of WHEREVER THERE’S A FIGHT (a history of California’s civil liberties activities), talk about the era of the mass incarceration of Japanese Americans during World War II, they will be joined by poet Brian Komei Dempster who will read from first-person stories written by former camp prisoners. Mr. Dempster will also read from his collection, TOPAZ, which examines the Japanese American imprisonment experience, its legacy and impact on younger generations, and intersecting issues of race, gender, sexuality, and power. We are honored that Jeanne Houston, prominent Japanese American co-author of FAREWELL TO MANZANAR will also be joining the panel. An exhibit based on the book by Elinson and Yogi will also be on view at the branch.