Gil Asakawa's Nikkei View | Perspectives on Asian-American culture through the lens of identity, history, and experience
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Note: An edited version of this post will run in the Holiday Issue of the national JACL's Pacific Citizen newspaper. Japanese Americans and the wider Asian Americans and Pacific Islander (AAPI) communities are seeing more of ourselves reflected in pop culture these days, but the high arts has a ways to go. It’s important to recognize the ongoing challenges of...

(Note: This is a sponsored post.) If you’ve ever dined at a nice Japanese restaurant, you’ve probably had misoshiru (miso soup) out of a lovely, thin bowl with lacquered fish – maybe red or orange inside, and black outside with an intricate Japanese pattern, probably in gold. Or maybe you’ve had sushi served in a round container with several layers and...

It took 15 years, but the US Postal Service (USPS) this past June released a Forever stamp that memorializes the “Go For Broke” 100th Battalion and 442nd Regimental Combat Team, the Nisei soldiers of World War II who served in Europe and became the most highly decorated unit in the history of the US military for their size and length...

NOTE: This is a re-publication of a Nikkei View blog post I wrote back in 2009, which an article in the New York Times linked to this week. The original version was on an older site and the images had been unlinked (and the food festival that inspired the original post has evolved into the Far East Fest, which was...

In her excellent book “The Fortune Cookie Chronicles: Adventures in the World of Chinese Food,” former New York Times journalist Jennifer 8 Lee explained that the fortune cookie isn’t a Chinese post-prandial delicacy at all, but rather a Japanese confection created first in Kyoto temples, adapted by Japanese Americans with little messages inside. Chinese restaurants happened to pass them out...

The Tokyo Olympics has been taking a lot of my attention now that it’s finally arrived, and I’m glad it seems to be running well, with few health issues even though Tokyo outside of the Olympics is suffering from an increase in Covid-19 infections. I hope the competition can continue, and that the Paralympics in several weeks can also be...

As I write this, the “2020” Tokyo Olympic Games are just two weeks away. It’s the second time the summer games have been held in Japan. I was a kid living in Japan when Tokyo hosted its first Olympics, from October 10-24, 1964. It was a big deal for all Japanese, and for me and my family – a Hawaii-born Nisei...

(NOTE: This is a sponsored post) I’m constantly learning more about Japanese knives and why and how they’re different from the typical kitchen knives we’ve grown up around. I’ve written about how I got into Japanese knives and why I bought my Santoku, the all-purpose knife that makes cooking a pleasure. I’m crazy about my Santoku. And now I have a Nakiri...

Perspectives on Asian-American culture through the lens of identity, history, and experience

Gil on Twitter


- January 25, 2022

Sushi plus: Hmart Inari Sushi with added Japanese fixn's #twEATs #foodporn @ H Mart Westminster
h J R

- January 24, 2022

Superior, Colorado after the #MarshallFire whipped through the community. All our hearts go out to the families who lost everything. @ Superior, Colorado
h J R

- January 24, 2022

Burn out: this is the landscape behind Costco in Superior, Colorado, which has reopened since the #MarshallFire. It's sad and shocking that every home behind the store is gone.
h J R

Gil on Instagram

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More from Gil Asakawa

Being Japanese American

“A must-read book that will delight you with its humor and amuse you with its insights; for non-Asian, a must-read book if you’re curious about what makes Japanese Americans tick.”

— John Tateishi, National Executive Director, Japanese American Citizens League