Immigration and Citizenship in Japan

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Japan is currently the only advanced industrial democracy with a fourth-generation immigrant problem. As other industrialized countries face the challenges of incorporating postwar immigrants, Japan continues to struggle with the incorporation of prewar immigrants and their descendants. Whereas others have focused on international norms, domestic institutions, and recent immigration, this book argues that contemporary immigration and citizenship politics in Japan reflect the strategic interaction between state efforts to control immigration and grassroots movements by multi-generational Korean resident activists to gain rights and recognition specifically as permanently settled foreign residents of Japan. Based on in-depth interviews and fieldwork conducted in Tokyo, Kawasaki, and Osaka, this book aims to further our understanding of democratic inclusion in Japan by analyzing how those who are formally excluded from the political process voice their interests and what factors contribute to the effective representation of those interests in public debate and policy.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“Chung’s depiction of how Zainichi Koreans are adapting to life in contemporary Japan offers a needed update to the classic works by Changsoo Lee and George DeVos. No longer are these Koreans locked into divisions reflecting the Cold War divide in the country of their ancestors. Nor are they stymied by Japan's reputedly homogeneous and oppressive culture. Instead, reflecting on their pioneering role in forcing Japanese society to confront its diversity, they are choosing strategies that will continue to remake the nation as it incorporates new waves of immigrants.”
—Len Schoppa, University of Virginia

“Nowhere is the enigmatic nature of Japanese politics and society more evident than in the areas of immigration and citizenship. In this brilliant book, Erin Chung deciphers the enigma, showing how immigrants have challenged traditional conceptions of Japanese identity and thereby opened new avenues for democratic development. It is a must-read.”
—James Hollifield, Southern Methodist University

“Erin Chung’s Immigration and Citizenship in Japan is a must-read for scholars of groups difference, immigration and politics. The case of Japan represents a fascinating set of circumstances that Chung probes with the best empirical and theoretical tools social science has to offer. Scholars of immigration, race, citizenship and Japanese politics will learn lots from the excellent book. Chung has a new and unique voice, and this book makes a definitive statement in several fields.”
—Mark Sawyer, University of California, Los Angeles

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780521514040
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 3/31/2010
  • Pages: 224
  • Product dimensions: 6.30 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Erin Aeran Chung is the Charles D. Miller Assistant Professor of East Asian Politics and Co-Director of the Racism, Immigration, and Citizenship (RIC) Program in the Department of Political Science at The Johns Hopkins University. Previously, she was an Advanced Research Fellow at Harvard University's Program on US-Japan Relations and a Japan Foundation Fellow at Saitama University in Urawa, Japan. Her articles on citizenship, noncitizen political engagement, and comparative racial politics have been published in the Du Bois Review and Asian Perspective. In 2009, she was awarded an Abe Fellowship by the Social Science Research Council to conduct research in Japan and Korea for her second book project on immigrant incorporation in ethnic democracies.
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Table of Contents

Introduction; 1. Is Japan an outlier? Cross-national patterns of immigrant incorporation and noncitizen political engagement; 2. Constructing citizenship and non-citizenship in postwar Japan; 3. Negotiating Korean identity in Japan; 4. Citizenship as political strategy; 5. Destination Japan: global shifts, local transformations; Conclusion.
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