The UCLA Asian American Studies Center and Amerasia Journal have announced that Yuko Konno of the Department of History at University of Southern California is the 2011 winner of the Amerasia Journal Lucie Cheng Prize for her essay, “Localism and Japanese Emigration at the Turn of the Twentieth Century.”
Konno was nominated by her adviser, Professor Lon Kurashige.
An excerpt from reviewers’ comments: “Konno presents a case study of the Wakayama Prefecture of Japan in the late 19th and early 20th centuries and relies on government documents that recorded overseas emigration including individual passport applications. Incorporating other kinds of local sources, the author is able to reconstruct a relatively fine-grained understanding of the contexts in which inhabitants of various villages chose to migrate.
“The focus on the village level in Japan also allows Konno to explain how Japanese negotiated the changes in immigration policies in the United States as well as to the shifts in international relations. Those shifts included migration to other countries such as Mexico, the Philippines, Australia, and China, and material presented provides some interesting glimpses of how this one corner of Japan sent people to far-flung places across the globe.”
The Lucie Cheng Prize recognizes exceptional graduate student essays in the interdisciplinary field of Asian American and Pacific Islander studies. The winning article is published in Amerasia Journal, and $1,000 is awarded to the recipient.
The prize honors the late Professor Lucie Cheng (1939-2010), a long-time faculty member of UCLA and the first permanent director of the UCLA Asian American Studies Center (1972-1987). Cheng was a pioneering scholar who brought an early and enduring transnational focus to the study of Asian Americans and issues such as gender, labor, and immigration.
For more information, visit www.aasc.ucla.edu/ajprize/.