Racism and Segregation in Orange County: Virtual Book Talk ♥★
June 21 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
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Join UCI Libraries to learn how one Japanese American family’s unlawful incarceration during World War II led to California’s landmark school desegregation lawsuit in the 1940s.
This uniquely American story celebrates how the Munemitsu and Mendez families persevered in the face of widespread, state-sanctioned racism in the 1940s. The intertwining stories of these two immigrant families in California and their resilience set the stage for the US Supreme Court’s Brown v. Board of Education decision, ending school segregation across the nation.
Despite the injustices and discrimination her family faced, Janice Munemitsu’s The Kindness of Color focuses on the cross-cultural cooperation between two oppressed families and communities of color in WWII-era Orange County. The book’s lessons are as relevant today in the fight for inequality as they were in the 1940s.
“It is vital that all of history, the truth both good and bad, be told and shared. We can learn from both the human victories and the injustices of the past, such as racism and false judgements.”
— Janice Munemitsu, The Kindness of Color
Janice Munemitsu is a third-generation Japanese American Sansei. A native of Orange County, California, she is a graduate of the University of Southern California and Biola University. After working more than 20 years in consumer goods marketing and branding, Janice now serves as a board member for a number of California nonprofits. The Kindness of Color, her first book, tells the true stories of her family and the Mendez family and how their paths met and led to California’s school desegregation in Mendez, et al. v. Westminster (1947), seven years before Brown v. Board of Education (1954).