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"Farewell to Manzanar" Author Comes Home to Inglewood

Inglewood-born Jeanne Wakatsuki Houston will be discussing her memoir Farewell to Manzanar as part of the California Reads: Searching for Democracy program, funded by Cal Humanities in partnership with California Center for the Book.  This free program will be presented on Friday April 13, 2012, from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. in the Gladys Waddingham Lecture Hall of the Main Library, 101 West Manchester Blvd.

Ms. Houston, along with her family, was part of the internment of Japanese Americans during World War II.  Library Journal described her book as "told without bitterness, her story reflects the triumph of the human spirit during an extraordinary episode in American history."

Mary Menzel, Director of the California Center for the Book, will interview Ms. Houston to make this an "author in conversation" event.

Inglewood Mayor James T. Butts notes that "this World War II part of American and Inglewood history is often overlooked.  I urge everyone to come and hear Ms. Houston's recollections and research."


A Farewell to Manzanar by Jeanne Wakatsuki Houston and co-author James D. Houston

A touching, funny and tragic memoir about the internment of Japanese Americans during World War II, A Farewell to Manzanar reminds us of a shameful chapter in the history of our state and our country. This riveting first-person account of a cataclysmic time for Japanese Americans, who were imprisoned in their own land yet were urged to send their sons to fight overseas, honors the dignity and great resourcefulness of people under even the most oppressive and demeaning circumstances. Updated with a new introduction, Houston's story is a poignant reminder that in moments of national crisis our civil rights can be most at risk.


Jeanne Wakatsuki Houston was born in Inglewood, California. Best known for her autobiographical account of her own experiences in a World War II internment camp, her work explores the ethnic diversity of the United States. She attended Long Beach Polytechnic High School, and graduated from San Jose State University, where she studied sociology and journalism. Co-written with her now-deceased husband, Jim, Ms. Houston's memoir delivers a powerful first-person account that reveals her search for the meaning of Manzanar.

For more information on the program call (310) 412-5397.