They Called Us Enemy

They Called Us Enemy

eBook - 2019
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George Takei has captured hearts and minds worldwide with his captivating stage presence and outspoken commitment to equal rights. But long before he braved new frontiers in Star Trek, he woke up as a four-year-old boy to find his own birth country at war with his father's{u2014}and their entire family forced from their home into an uncertain future. In a stunning graphic memoir, Takei revisits his haunting childhood in American concentration camps, as one of over 100,000 Japanese Americans imprisoned by the U.S. government during World War II. Experience the forces that shaped an American icon{u2014}and America itself{u2014}in this gripping tale of courage, country, loyalty, and love.
Publisher: [Place of publication not identified] : IDW Publishing, 2019.
ISBN: 9781684067510
Characteristics: 1 online resource
data file
Additional Contributors: OverDrive, Inc


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RandomLibrarian Aug 01, 2019

George Takei's graphic memoir, "They Called Us Enemy", is powerful. That might seem like a cliche, but I don't know how else to describe his story of growing up in the American concentration camps during WWII, criminalized as a child, along with his parents and siblings, because he was ... Read More »

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CCPL_Teens Jan 26, 2021

George Takei’s They Called Us Enemy is one of the best graphic memoirs in recent years. It details his family’s imprisonment in two Japanese American internment camps during World War II. Takei was a child at the time and the book describes the horrifying treatment Japanese American families had to endure at the expense of the American government. The driving force behind this treatment was Executive Order 9066 which authorized civilian exclusion orders and the deportation of Japanese Americans from their homes to internment camps across the country. Japanese Americans were deemed enemies due largely to the War and the bombing of Pearl Harbor. Executive Order 9066 denied them due process and was the by-product of American hysteria, fear, and racism. Rather than write an anti-American book, Takei takes a different approach describing how American democracy is a fragile guidepost. At times, it takes a nation to change the policies of its leaders and to recognize its past. This is a beautifully written book about coming to terms with one’s own experiences and teaching those experiences to others. It belongs in every high school history classroom across the country.

Dec 29, 2020

Fall 2016

IndyPL_TammieB Nov 24, 2020

This is an element of US history that little is taught about. Although most are aware that the internment happened, most have no idea of any of the details of the experience. As with any part of our history, those who ignore the past are doomed to repeat it. This book helps us learn what really happened, why it happened, and how those involved were impacted by it. The book also moves into present day and shows what our country has done in response to the pain of the past and even how it has impacted current actions it has taken. A major theme of the book is based on the idea that “our democracy is participatory. Existentially it is dependent on people who cherish the shining, highest ideals of our democracy and actively engaging in the political process.”
This book is a great way to personalize events in history. The reader gets to know the Takei family and empathizes with their story. It also recognizes some of the amazing contributions of Mr. Takei as an activist and philanthropist, not just an actor.
This is a fun and easy read as a graphic novel, yet it is very thought provoking. It acts as a reminder of a shameful time in America's history, and at the same time is so terrifyingly relevant to today. It offers far too many parallels with the present day, cautioning us against how easy it is to turn a neighbor into an "other" into an enemy.

Oct 30, 2020

This book is excellent because it gives a firsthand account of what is was like for a young boy and his family to be forced to live in the US Japanese detention camps during World War II. This can help young people think about what it was like, and to understand the importance of learning history.

JCLAnneG Aug 18, 2020

Such an amazing story from one of my favorite actors and activists. George Takai shows us what his childhood was like in the internment camps of the US, and how that shaped his life to become the strong activist he is today for equality and equity. The pictures are moving, and his narrative is strong. It bounces between present day and past, but seamlessly.

LoganLib_Phoebe Aug 16, 2020

George Takei's graphic novel memoir is well worth reading. Funny, poignant and tragic in equal measure, it tells the story of Japanese internment in the USA during the Second World War. It alternates between the perspectives of the child George and the adult George to provide context.

Mar 20, 2020

I saw the play in the movie theatre. I look forward to reading it!

ArapahoeTina Mar 18, 2020

I learned so much from this story that was uniquely informative and personal. George Takei is a national treasure!

Mar 17, 2020

The former "Star Trek" actor tells the story of how he and his family were interned during World War II. It's in graphic novel form, so it'd be an excellent introduction of the subject to children and teens. It's a gripping account of one of the most shameful incidents in our history. I'd also recommend the novel "Farewell to Manzanar" and the history of the internment, "Infamy."

Mar 01, 2020

George Takei, who famously played Sulu on Star Trek TOS, wrote this inspiring graphic memoir about growing up in the American internment camps where American citizens of Japanese ancestry were forcibly detained during the second world war. This is a book very much worth reading for anyone who wants to see a darker side of American history.

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IndyPL_TammieB Nov 24, 2020

IndyPL_TammieB thinks this title is suitable for 12 years and over

ArapahoeTina Mar 31, 2020

ArapahoeTina thinks this title is suitable for 8 years and over


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IndyPL_TammieB Nov 24, 2020

Many know George Takei as Lieutenant Hikaru Sulu from the Star Trek series, but long before George Takei braved new frontiers in Star Trek, he woke up as a four-year-old boy to find his own birth country at war with his father's -- and their entire family forced from their home into an uncertain future. In 1942, at the order of President Franklin D. Roosevelt, every person of Japanese descent on the west coast was rounded up and shipped to one of ten "relocation centers," hundreds or thousands of miles from home, where they would be held for years under armed guard. In this graphic novel Takei shares his story of growing up in these internment camps, as well as the impact it had on his adult life.


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IndyPL_TammieB Nov 24, 2020

"Our democracy is participatory. Existentially it is dependent on people who cherish the shining, highest ideals of our democracy and actively engaging in the political process.”


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