War Brides of Japan, a docu*memory: "Herstory" movie poster

“Herstory” is chapter 1 of 5 chapters that make up the “War Brides of Japan, a docu*memory” film series.

Historian Lily (“Dekasegi”) talks about the similarities between early migrants who left Japan never to return, and Japanese war brides who left much later with their former enemies—the Americans who occupied their post-WWII country.

Another historian, Regina (“Japanese Brides, American Wives”), discusses the US Occupation of Japan; how American military men were permitted to marry local Japanese women only after the War Brides Act of 1945 was passed; and, how anti-miscegenation statutes prevented some couples from being allowed to live in certain US states.

Both historians also recount how the American Red Cross bridal schools in Japan trained Japanese women to become more westernized.

"War Brides of Japan, a docu*memory” features 5 chapters as indicated below:

1. “Herstory” featuring “Dekasegi” & “Japanese Brides, American Wives”

2. “The Brides” featuring “The Best Ambassador” & “Kitchens & a Priest”

3. “The Kids” featuring “The Entertainer’s Daughter”, “hafu” & “Remembering Her Mother”

4. “The Culture” featuring “Cactus…Cranes…Cooks”, “Tamales 4 Bon Odori” & “Bringing Japan Home”

5. “BFF’s: Buddhist Friends Forever” featuring “Missing Her Mom”, “Family Fortune” & “Disowned/Reclaimed”

www.warbridesofjapan.com #warbridesofjapan

  • Yayoi L Winfrey
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Student Project:
  • Indo-Global International Film Festival
    Mumbai, Maharashtra India
    July 20, 2019
    Official Selection for Best Film Poster award
Artist Biography

Born in postwar Tokyo to a Japanese war bride and an African American soldier, Yayoi L Naito Winfrey has been creating media all her life. First, as an illustrator and graphic designer; then as a screenwriter, fiction writer and journalist; and, now, as a filmmaker. Growing up on three continents by the time she was five years-old gifted her with a strong appreciation for other people’s languages and cultures. As a mixed-race person, she has an innate sense of what it’s like being ’the other’; and, her long career in arts reflects that special position.

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Artist Statement

Storytelling through film engages so many senses. I feel so fortunate that I’m able to combine my love for both visual art and literature to make movies.