Beyond Barbed Wire
January 9, 2024 @ 6:30 pm - 8:00 pm
At the beginning of WWII, over 125,000 Japanese, two thirds of whom were US Citizens, were incarcerated. From the perspective of a third generation Japanese-American (Sansei), Denny Kato will discuss the how, when and why racism landed Americans in what is more accurately described as prison camps, and what we can do to countermand the effect of anti-Asian violence and racism in America today.
Born and raised in Cincinnati, Ohio, Denny Kato is third generation Japanese American, or Sansei. He graduated from Walnut Hills High School, received a BA from the University of Cincinnati in 1971, and served in the US Army as a 1LT in military intelligence. After retirement from restaurant management, what started out for Denny as curiosity about his family history, grew into thoroughly researching how people of Japanese descent were forced from their homes during World War II and placed in internment camps. Like the fifteen members of his family who were incarcerated, most were American citizens.
He and his wife, Janet, have visited all ten of the internment camps from the Pacific west coast to the rural southeast of Arkansas. Since 2019, Denny has lectured both live and via zoom for the Art Institute of Cincinnati, nearly a dozen for OLLI (Osher Lifelong Learning Institute) at the University of South Florida, Carnegie Mellon University, Rochester University, and the University of Cincinnati, Japan America Society of Greater Cincinnati, Harriet Beecher Stowe House in Cincinnati.