Farewell to Manzanar Community
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What kind of community can come out of a prison environment? No, this isn't coming from an episode of Orange is the New Black—it's a major concern and reality for the characters in Farewell to Manzanar. The lesson that this story of Japanese-American internment gives us is that communities created under lock-and-key are both incredibly supportive and incredibly destructive. Kind of like going home for the holidays, but with the drama turned up to eleven.
Questions About Community
- What are some examples of how supportive and how destructive the communities in Manzanar are? Why do you think Manzanar is able to produce these types of communities?
- What kinds of new alliances opened up in Manzanar? Could they survive outside of Manzanar?
- Compare the communities on Terminal Island and in the Cabrillo Housing Project. How are they different and how are they similar? Which would be the better community for a young Japanese-American girl like Jeanne to grow up in?
- Do any of the different communities found in the book serve as a solid substitute for family, especially one as dysfunctional as the Wakatsuki clan?
Chew on This
They say it takes a village to raise a kid, so it was actually a benefit for kids to be raised in Manzanar.
Your surrounding community can be better for you than your own family.
Farewell to Manzanar Community Study Group
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