Australia’s shared history with Japan is very much dominated by the Second World War and trade. And although Japanese people have been a part of Australian society since the late nineteenth century, they have never been considered a significant ethnic group with their own Australian story. The term “Nikkei” or Japanese diaspora is virtually unknown in Australia, especially compared to North America, where Nikkei have a very vocal, visible identity.

In fact, when producer Masako Fukui put the question to her fellow Japanese-Australians, she discovered some unusual thoughts about identity, as well as confusion and even ignorance about their Australian heritage.

Stories of early settlers differ markedly from those of contemporary Japanese-Australians. And the Second World War experience has still not been forgotten by many.

The show features interviews with: Mary Jarzabkowski (nee Nakashiba) / Dr Yuriko Nagata / Haruka Hirata / Roger Sho Gehrmann / Marsilla Fujisawa / Kei Fukui / Miki Kobayashi / Hajime Kobayashi / Lisa Kobayashi / Sarah Kobayashi / Mayu Kanamori

Full information and link to listen to the show here: ABC Radio National – From pearlers and bankers