Film, Video Voices from the Canefields: Folksongs from Japanese Immigrant Workers in Hawaii

About this Item

Title
Voices from the Canefields: Folksongs from Japanese Immigrant Workers in Hawaii
Summary
Drawing on research for his recent book, "Voices from the Canefields," author Franklin Odo situates over two hundred songs of Japanese immigrant workers in Hawaii, in translation, in a hitherto largely unexplored historical context.

According to Odo, folk songs are short stories from the souls of common people. Some,like Mexican corridos or Scottish ballads reworked in the Appalachians, are stories of tragic or heroic episodes. Others, like the African American blues, reach from a difficult present back into slavery and forward into a troubled future.

Japanese workers on Hawaii's plantations created their own versions, in form more akin to their traditional tanka or haiku poetry. These holehole bushi describe the experiences of one particular group caught in the global movements of capital, empire, and labor during the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

Event Date
September 20, 2013
Notes
-  Franklin S. Odo is a Japanese American author, scholar, activist and historian. Odo has served as the director of the Asian Pacific American Program at the Smithsonian Institution since the program's inception in 1997.
Related Resources
American Folklife Center: https://www.loc.gov/folklife/
Running Time
57 minutes 18 seconds
Language
english
Online Format
video
Description
Drawing on research for his recent book, "Voices from the Canefields," author Franklin Odo situates over two hundred songs of Japanese immigrant workers in Hawaii, in translation, in a hitherto largely unexplored historical context. According to Odo, folk songs are short stories from the souls of common people. Some,like Mexican corridos or Scottish ballads reworked in the Appalachians, are stories of tragic or heroic episodes. Others, like the African American blues, reach from a difficult present back into slavery and forward into a troubled future. Japanese workers on Hawaii's plantations created their own versions, in form more akin to their traditional tanka or haiku poetry. These holehole bushi describe the experiences of one particular group caught in the global movements of capital, empire, and labor during the late 19th and early 20th centuries.
Original Format
film, video

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Credit Line: Library of Congress

Cite This Item

Citations are generated automatically from bibliographic data as a convenience, and may not be complete or accurate.

Chicago citation style:

Voices from the Canefields: Folksongs from Japanese Immigrant Workers in Hawaii. 2013. Video. https://www.loc.gov/item/webcast-6174/.

APA citation style:

(2013) Voices from the Canefields: Folksongs from Japanese Immigrant Workers in Hawaii. [Video] Retrieved from the Library of Congress, https://www.loc.gov/item/webcast-6174/.

MLA citation style:

Voices from the Canefields: Folksongs from Japanese Immigrant Workers in Hawaii. 2013. Video. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, <www.loc.gov/item/webcast-6174/>.

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