SEDAI: The Japanese Canadian Legacy Project

Sharing the unique history and experiences of Canadians of Japanese ancestry

Monday, November 3, 2014

Sedai Corner – November is for Remembering

As fall turns to winter cold, here at Sedai the month of November is for pause and reflection, before the busy holiday season. May we all be able to take a moment and extend our appreciation to those who came before us as we mark Remembrance Day, and may the brave sacrifices of our ancestors, and the ideals we can all strive towards in providing a future free from prejudice for the next generation.

Sedai has been very busy, assisting with the preparation of video footage and supporting documentation for the newly mounted spotlight exhibit in the Moriyama Nikkei Heritage Centre titled “Celebrating the Friendship between Canada’s Jewish and Japanese Communities”. We encourage all JCCC members, their family, friends, and visitors to the Centre to visit the space and read our many community testimonials. Our sincere thanks goes in particular to the many community members who stepped forward to provide their piece of the history, whether in Sedai interview, or through written submissions. Especially in a time when it is easy to find mass conflict – political, social, or religious – it seems especially important to highlight those friendships across lines of difference.

As well, Sedai would like to give its deepest thanks to The Honourable John A. Fraser, and Arthur S. Hara for their interviews with Sedai Project founder Connie Sugiyama, and former Sedai Project Coordinator Lisa Uyeda. Interviews with both gentlemen were conducted through a special opportunity to speak with them in British Columbia, with regards to their assistance in the fight for Redress. The Honourable John A. Fraser – an Officer of the Order of Canada – was a member of Parliament for Vancouver South, as well as a former Speaker of the House of Commons (1972-1993). Arthur S. Hara, in working on promoting Canada’s relations with the Pacific Rim as a prominent Japanese-Canadian businessman, is also an Officer of the Order of Canada, and received the Order of the Rising Sun. Their invaluable memories and perspective will be added to the mosaic that is Japanese-Canadian history, as preserved through Sedai and the JCCC Archive. Sedai would also like to extend its thanks to the Oral History and Language Lab at UBC’s Museum of Anthropology for their assistance in facilitating the recording process. The lab endeavors to provide support to the greater community in recording and preserving oral histories – our sincere thanks for your assistance!

If you have questions, or would like information regarding recording your family legacy, please contact Elizabeth Fujita, at or 416 441 2345 ext. 303.

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