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 Featured Title
Terrain of Memory
A Japanese Canadian Memorial Project
Kirsten Emiko McAllister  

$92.00 Hardcover
Release Date: 7/13/2010
ISBN: 9780774817714    

$36.95 Paperback
Release Date: 1/1/2011
ISBN: 9780774817721    

312 Pages


About the Book

For communities who have been the target of political violence, the after-effects can haunt what remains of their families, their communities, and the societies in which they live.

Terrain of Memory tells the story of Japanese Canadians elders who built a memorial in 1994 to mark a village in an isolated mountainous valley in British Columbia with their history of persecution. Unlike conventional narratives about the history of Japanese Canadian internment camps, this book focuses on the power of collective memory to commemorate a site of political violence and rebuild relations of trust and understanding. This book presents the challenges the elders faced, including the reluctance of some to excavate the village’s painful past and attempts to turn the memorial into a tourist site. It shows how their memorial transformed the valley where once over 7,000 women, men, and children were interned into a pilgrimage site for Japanese Canadians where they can mourn and pay their respects to the wartime generation.

Terrain of Memory will appeal to those interested in Japanese Canadian internment camps and the history of racial cleansing, as well as to those wanting to learn about the complexities of researching collective memory.

About the Author(s)

Kirsten Emiko McAllister is an associate professor in the School of Communication at Simon Fraser University.

Table of Contents

Introduction: The Drive to Do Research

1 A Necessary Crisis

2 Mapping the Spaces of Internment

3 The Chronotope of the (Im)memorial

4 Continuity and Change between Generations

5 Making Space for Other Memories in the Historical Landscape

6 In Memory of Others

Conclusion: Points of Departure





"Terrain of Memory is an important, irreplaceable book for its intellectual acuity, its ethnographic precision, its historical and archival capaciousness, and its writerly beauty, bravery, and openness. It contributes immeasurably to work on state violence, racialization, trauma, and community memory across the humanities and social sciences; as it educates its readers about the trials of Japanese Canadians in the years around World War II, it provides an exemplary analysis of the multiple ways the work of memory never ends."
-- Lauren Berlant, George M. Pullman Professor, Department of English, University of Chicago

"I laughed, I cried, I read with wonder and astonishment and awe. McAllister’s prose is haunting and erudite, a remarkable, evocative story of the meanings and memories that linger uncannily in the walls, the ground, the minds of Japanese Canadians interned at the Orchard and other sites. She maps a journey both personal and communal that will resonate with scholars, activists, and community members. What an amazing contribution to our understanding of the terrain on memory."
--Audrey Kobayashi, professor of geography and Queen’s Research Chair, Queen’s University

"Terrain of Memory is a compelling and in-depth study of the processes and forms of collective remembering and memorializing among groups who experienced persecution and political violence. Set within the broader arena of Canadian postwar politics of redress and reconciliation, this book is a useful text for students and a valuable source for community workers and cultural and human rights organizations concerned with reparation and human rights."
--Pilar Riaño-Alcalá, author of Dwellers of Memory: Youth and Violence in Medellin, Colombia (1985-2000)

Sample Chapter

Front Matter and Chapter One

Related Topics

Cultural Studies
BC Studies
Asian Studies

Other Ways To Order

In Canada, order your copy of Terrain of Memory from UTP Distribution at:

UTP Distribution
5201 Dufferin Street
Toronto, Ontario
M3H 5T8

Phone orders: 1(800)565-9523 or (416)667-7791
Fax orders: 1(800)221-9985 or (416)667-7832

Ordering information for customers outside Canada

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