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Farewell to Manzanar

  • Date Submitted: 01/28/2010 12:25 AM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 59.3 
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A Generation Compared



      “Each generation imagines itself to be more intelligent than the one that went before it, and wiser than the one that comes after it” this is a quote said by George Orwell.   This quote relates to the novel Farewell to Manzanar written by Jeanne Wakatsuki Houston and James D. Houston. Throughout the novel, where Jeanne and her family is sent to an internment camp at Manzanar she grows up drifting away from the traditional Issei ways of thinking and widens her own perspective about life. The generation gap between the Issei immigrants and their Nisei children has many differences amongst religious affairs, respect, and culture.



      The family life is centered on religious aspects and decisions. Even though Mama and Papa do not practice their Buddhist religion frequently by saying prayers on a daily base, they still keep its morals and life-style. This shows that even though prayers were not said everyday. In addition, when Jeanne wanted to be baptized as a Catholic, her father did not approve and protested with the statement saying, “If you get baptized a Catholic, you have to marry a Catholic. No Japanese boys are in the Catholic Church. You get baptized now, how are you going to find a good Japanese boy to marry?” (Houston 115). This shows that marriages are based on race and religion in which Papa follows because he does not trust organized religions. Because of Papa’s beliefs of religion in relation to marriage, Jeanne hated him for awhile but as she grew older she thanked him for postponing decisions she was not old enough to make for herself. Was important back in those days.



      Respect is also an important matter in family life. At one time Woody, the eldest son, had all the respect for Papa, but had kept open a little door of doubt until he saw the things Papa was talking about for his own eyes in Japan. This shows that as old or mature as a person is, in trusting their parents’...

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