Skip navigation links (access key: Z)Library and Archives Canada / Bibliothèque et Archives CanadaSymbol of the Government of Canada
Français - Version française de cette pageHome - The main page of the Institution's websiteContact Us - Institutional contact informationHelp - Information about using the institutional websiteSearch - Search the institutional websitecanada.gc.ca - Government of Canada website

Archived Content

This archived Web page remains online for reference, research or recordkeeping purposes. This page will not be altered or updated. Web pages that are archived on the Internet are not subject to the Government of Canada Web Standards. As per the Communications Policy of the Government of Canada, you can request alternate formats of this page on the Contact Us page.

Banner: The Kids' Site of Canadian Settlement
IntroductionExplore the Communities
  Section title: Japanese
Graphical element: Japanese couple   Introduction
History
Daily Life
Culture
References

Introduction

Japanese Canadians celebrated 100 years of life in Canada in 1977. For many of those years, Japanese immigrants had to struggle against racism and discrimination. The early settlers from Japan were treated with disrespect and even hatred in some communities. Today, the situation is very different. Japanese Canadians such as scientist David Suzuki and painter Miyuki Tanobe are sought-after and celebrated across the country.

For many decades, Canadian laws and people's cruelty restricted and harmed many Japanese Canadians. The worst discrimination began in 1942 when harsh wartime laws ruined the lives of many Japanese-Canadian families. Like many other newcomers, many struggled to make a living in their new home, or found opportunities to make their lives better. Japanese immigrants to Canada have enjoyed successes in their own local communities and throughout Canada. Each generation of Japanese immigrants has a special name: the Issei (pronounced "ee-say"), meaning "one," were the first arrivals. Their children are called Nisei ("nee-say"), meaning "two." The children of the Nisei are called Sansei (san means "three").

 
Relocation of Japanese Canadians to internment camps in the interior of British Columbia, 1942   The Takatsu family settled on a farm in La Rochelle, Manitoba

Glossary

racism: a belief that one group is superior to others because of race; prejudice based on this belief

discrimination: unfair treatment of members of a group because of race, religion, gender, or other characteristics


Proactive Disclosure