The CPA Video Archives

Legacy of an Enduring Spirit: Triumphing Over Adversity, Japanese American WW II Incarcerations Then and Now

Since 2005, Northern California photojournalist, Paul Kitagaki Jr., has reviewed over 900 photographs at the National Archives, taken by War Relocation Authority photographers of the 1942 internment of 120,000 Japanese American citizens. From fragmentary captions he has identified more than 50 subjects — including an image of his father’s family at a relocation center created by one of his professional heroes, Dorothea Lange. From these images, Paul has persuaded these survivors and their descendants to sit for his camera in settings related to their internment. Kitagaki states that these paired “then and now” images, “strive to create contemporary images that complement and mirror the original photographs of Lange and her counterparts and reveal the strength and perseverance of my subjects.”




Paul Kitagaki