Nikkei Chicago / 日系シカゴ

Documenting the untold stories of Nikkei (Japanese American) Chicago シカゴにおける日系人に関する記事のサイト

The Kansha Project

The Kansha Project is a JACL Chicago program that connects Japanese American youth to the continuing legacy of the Japanese American community’s incarceration during World War II. This documentary centers around the 2012 Kansha Project and the educational trip of Chicago Japanese American youth participants to Los Angeles’ Little Tokyo neighborhood and the Manzanar concentration camp site.

The Kansha Project is supported by the JACL Legacy Grant program and the Chicago Japanese American Council.



Contributor Bio:

Jason Matsumoto (Contributor) is a fourth-generation Japanese American from Chicago.  Both sides of his family found themselves in the city after his Nisei grandparents resettled from the WWII incarceration sites in Rohwer, Arkansas and Tule Lake, CA.  Matsumoto earned a business degree from the University of Washington in Seattle and spent a year in Japan as a study-abroad student attending Sophia University in Tokyo.  While his day job challenges him to strategically develop markets for derivative products at the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, his true passion follows a more creative arc.  Matsumoto has been involved in taiko (Japanese percussion) since age six and continues to develop as a musician and composer through his role as director of Chicago’s Ho Etsu Taiko Ensemble (website: | Facebook:  He is also the owner of a production company that currently supports his directorial endeavors.  To date, he has directed two short documentary films commissioned by the Japanese American Citizens League.  Both films follow a group of students on a pilgrimage to historic Japanese American confinement sites where they engage in conversations about modern communities and civil liberties.

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