Tainted Blood: Jus Sanguinus and the Sociolinguistic Ostracism of Japanese Brazilians

Open Access
Vanier, David Rawle
Area of Honors:
East Asian Studies
Bachelor of Science
Document Type:
Thesis Supervisors:
  • Jonathan Eran Abel, Thesis Supervisor
  • Reiko Tachibana, Honors Advisor
  • nikkei
  • Japanese
  • Japan
  • Brazilians
  • Brazil
  • language
  • Jus Sanguinus
Japanese Brazilians in Japan are in a crisis as a result of an economic downturn. Just as the younger generation had started to show some progress in Japan, the recession’s calamitous effects jeopardized the livelihood of Japanese Brazilian communities across the country. This paper examines the role of language in the history leading up to the current crisis. It traces the impact language has had in creating the status quo of the Japanese Brazilians in the labor market, education, and community life. In accordance with the eminently disadvantaged status of Japanese Brazilians among immigrants in Japan, extraordinary measures must be taken to integrate fledgling Japanese Brazilian communities into mainstream Japanese society. This paper concludes with suggestions for rectifying the situation using a lingual framework.