Northern Michigan University's Diversity Common Reader Program encourages faculty to consider adopting its 2021-22 selection, “We Hereby Refuse: Japanese American Resistance to Wartime Incarceration,” for a fall or winter course.
The new nonfiction graphic novel by Frank Abe and Tamiko Nimura tells the story of the incarceration of Japanese Americans during World War II through the lives of three historical figures who experienced it firsthand and resisted it. It is illustrated by Ross Ishikawa and Matt Sasaki.
“The topic is timely, given the upcoming 80th anniversary of Executive Order 9066, which authorized the camps, the current rise of anti-Asian hate crimes, and ongoing debates about immigration, citizenship and policies of detention and family separation,” said Lesley Larkin, DCRP chair and NMU English professor. “I think the book will be applicable to a lot of different courses in English, education, history, political science and other areas, and accessible to a wide range of readers.”
Larkin said most Diversity Common Reader Program events will be scheduled for Winter 2022, including a visit to NMU by one of the book's coauthors, Tamiko Nimura.
The Diversity Common Reader Program (DCRP) is a campus-wide initiative that focuses on reading as a means of social dialogue and change. Held annually since 2013, this program comprises an interdisciplinary series of events inspired by a nonfiction book of interdisciplinary interest that advances discussions of diversity, inclusion and justice.
Each year, books are distributed free of charge to interested NMU students on a first-come, first-served basis, and all events are free and open to the public.