Google Doodles recently featured a special doodle of Japanese American journalist and short story author Hisaye Yamamoto to celebrate Asian Pacific American Heritage Month.
- The doodle features Yamamoto writing as pieces of paper float around her.
- Some pages have illustrations of Yamamoto’s characters, while others allude to an internment camp and a nomadic lifestyle.
- This doodle is one of the 4,000 Google Doodles that have been created over the years to “celebrate holidays, anniversaries, and the lives of famous artists, pioneers, and scientists.”
Today’s #GoogleDoodle is acclaimed Nisei writer Hisaye Yamamoto! 📚 Incarcerated at Poston during WWII, Yamamoto wrote about the experiences of Japanese American women, intergenerational dynamics in immigrant families, and the aftermath of incarceration. https://t.co/QS1TAMFxxv pic.twitter.com/uORPPVyC6C
— Densho (@DenshoProject) May 4, 2021
This generation of Asian American writers owes so much to the brave few who went before, like Hisaye Yamamoto. Imagine writing short stories in English about Japanese Americans in the middle of the 20th century. How lonely that must have been. https://t.co/OaGwmMxW3R
— Viet Thanh Nguyen (@viet_t_nguyen) May 4, 2021
About Yamamoto: The acclaimed writer was one of the first Asian American writers to be given a “post-war national literary recognition,” according to Google.
- Yamamoto, the daughter of Japanese immigrants, was born in Redondo Beach, Calif. on August 23, 1921. She was forced to live in a Japanese concentration camp with her family after the start of World War II.
- During and after her time at the concentration camp, she wrote for different newspapers about racism and amplifying diverse voices, among other themes.
- Yamamoto pursued a full-time career as a writer after her first short story, “The High Heeled Shoes,” was published in 1948. She continued writing about racism, gender, ethnicity and war, eventually receiving the Before Columbus Foundation’s American Book Award for Lifetime Achievement.
- She passed away on January 30, 2011, in Los Angeles at the age of 89.
Featured Image via Densho Encyclopedia