Piece Comment

Review of Japanese "War Brides"

December marks the 50th anniversary of the War Brides Act. Before 1945, Asians were the only group excluded from immigration. This piece by Anna Wu features a group of war brides living in North Carolina. While an important piece, it feels like it could use another draft. The tape of the war brides is charming but they were recorded in a room all together. Often you hear laughter in response to the interviewee's statements. It works quite a bit of the time but sometimes distracts from what the women are saying. There is a lot of useful info reported by the producer but I wanted the women to go deeper to talk about what it was like to adapt to US life, the racism they must have encountered after the end of the war, and the loneliness of being so far from their families and homeland. What was it like for them to raise American children who didn't know much about their Japanese culture? How did their husbands adjust to comments about being in an interracial marriage? I would have liked more exploration. This is a great subject and I would encourage the producer to delve more into her tape to find the depth or perhaps go back to the group of women for another round of interviews. This is important history and one that isn't covered much at all in US history. I do encourage stations to listen to this piece and think about commemorate the 50th anniversary during the month of December.