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Energized by the social movements of the ‘60s and ‘70s, large numbers of Sansei were drawn to Little Tokyo to get involved in the issues that were best addressed from the historic center of the Japanese American community—Vietnam War, redevelopment and gentrification, social services, legacy of the concentration camp experience, workers’ rights and preservation of history, identity and cultural expression.

VC was housed in the Sun Building on Weller Court in the early 1970s—the unofficial community cultural center in which many Japanese cultural arts instructors, Japanese American Community Services, Japanese American Citizen’s League, the Pacific Citizen, and others had offices. The Sun Building was slated for redevelopment and eventually torn down in the conflict covered in the video.

Evelyn Yoshimura, Mark Masoka, David Monkawa and Lucien Kubo recall the redevelopment struggle and the fight for housing, services, equal pay and the future of Little Tokyo.

  • Year
  • Runtime
    12 minutes
  • Language
  • Country
    United States
  • Premiere
  • Director
    Visual Communications