Jump to Content

Collection Guide
Collection Title:
Collection Number:
Get Items:
Finding Aid for the Akira Fujita Papers, 1946-1992
296  
View entire collection guide What's This?
PDF (124.47 Kb) HTML
Search this collection
Collection Details
 
Table of contents What's This?
  • Descriptive Summary
  • Administrative Information
  • Biography
  • Scope and Content
  • Organization and Arrangement
  • Indexing Terms
  • Related Material

  • Descriptive Summary

    Title: Akira Fujita Papers,
    Date (inclusive): 1946-1992
    Collection number: 296
    Creator: Fujita, Akira, 1920-
    Extent: 32 boxes (16 linear ft.)
    Repository: University of California, Los Angeles. Library. Department of Special Collections.
    Los Angeles, California 90095-1575
    Abstract: Fujita was born February 17, 1920 in Brawley, California. In 1922 he was taken to Miho in the city of Shimizu, Japan, where he was raised by his maternal grandparents. He attended Waseda University from 1937-40. He returned to California and farmed with his father in the Imperial Valley before the outbreak of World War II. Fujita was sent to internment camps at Poston, Arizona; Tule Lake, California; and Crystal City, Texas. While at Tule Lake, he edited a literary journal, Doto, and contributed to another, Tessaku. In 1945 he renounced his American citizenship under duress, and did not regain his citizenship until 1957. A Kibei-Nisei writer, he became a central figure in the literary society Nanka Bungei and of the literary journal of the same name. He also wrote the first two novels of a projected trilogy: Nochi no kokei ( An Agricultural Landscape, 1982) and Tachinoki no kisetsu ( An Evacuation Season, 1984). The collection consists of diaries, manuscripts, drafts, galleys, incoming correspondence files, personal memorabilia, copies of Akira Fujita's published writings, and books by Nanka Bungei writers and others. Most of the collection is in Japanese.
    Physical location: Stored off-site at SRLF. Advance notice is required for access to the collection. Please contact the UCLA Library, Department of Special Collections Reference Desk for paging information.
    Language: English.

    Administrative Information

    Restrictions on Use and Reproduction

    Copyright of portions of this collection has been assigned to the Department of Special Collections, UCLA. All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the Manuscripts Librarian. Permission for publication is given on behalf of the Department of Special Collections.

    Restrictions on Access

    COLLECTION STORED OFF-SITE AT SRLF: Open for research. Advance notice required for access. Contact the UCLA Library, Department of Special Collections Reference Desk for paging information.

    Provenance/Source of Acquisition

    Gift of Grace Yaeno Fujita, 1995.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item], Akira Fujita Papers (Collection 296). Department of Special Collections, Charles E. Young Research Library, University of California, Los Angeles.

    UCLA Catalog Record ID

    UCLA Catalog Record ID: 4233050 

    Biography

    Fujita was born February 17, 1920 in Brawley, California; in 1922 he was taken to Miho in the city of Shimizu, Japan, where he was raised by his maternal grandparents; attended Waseda University, 1937-40; returned to California and farmed with his father in the Imperial Valley before the outbreak of World War II; Fujita was sent to internment camps at Poston, Arizona, Tule Lake, California, and Crystal City, Texas; while at Tule Lake, he edited a literary journal, Doto, and contributed to another, Tessaku; in 1945 he renounced his American citizenship under duress, and did not regain his citizenship until 1957; a Kibei-Nisei writer, he became a central figure in literary society Nanka Bungei and of the literary journal of the same name; in 1981 Fujita edited an anthology drawn from the journal, titled Nanka Bungei Senshu, 1965-1980; wrote the first two novels of a projected trilogy: Nochi no kokei ( An Agricultural Landscape, 1982) and Tachinoki no kisetsu ( An Evacuation Season, 1984).

    Additional Biographical Narrative

    Note

    [characters] indicates Japanese characters included in the print version of this online finding aid, available for consultation at the UCLA Library, Department of Special Collections.
    Fujita Akira [characters], a Kibei-Nisei writer. A native of Brawley, California, Fujita was born February 17, 1920 as the second son of Fujita Keijiro and Kan [characters]. His Japanese immigrant parents originated from Miho [characters] in the city of Shimizu [characters] in Shizuoka Prefecture [characters]. His father was a longtime tenant farmer in the Imperial Valley. In 1922 Fujita was taken to Japan where he was raised in Miho by his maternal grandparents. He attended grammar school in Miho and middle school in Shimizu. In 1937 he matriculated into Waseda University and studied economics, but withdrew from this school in 1940 to return to the United States. Upon his return, he attended high school in Los Angeles, while working as a so-called school boy. Before the outbreak of the Pacific War, he was farming with his father in the Imperial Valley.
    During the Second World War, Fujita was successively interned at Poston, Arizona, Tule Lake, California, and Crystal City, Texas. While interned at Tule Lake, he edited a literary journal called Doto [characters]. Seven issues of this journal were issued in 1944 and 1945. Fujita also contributed to the Tessaku [characters], another literary journal published at Tule Lake, also in 1944 and 1945. In 1945 he renounced his American citizenship under duress, and in the following year he was transferred to Crystal City. After his release from this final internment camp, he settled down in Southern California where he worked as a gardener until his retirement. In 1955 he married Grace Yaeno Hironaka [characters], a Kibei. And in 1957 he regained his American citizenship.
    In the postwar era, Fujita was the central figure in a Southern California literary society called the Nanka Bungei [characters]. From 1965 to 1985 this society published the Nanka Bungei, a literary journal named after the society. The initial membership of the society consisted primarily of those former Tule Lake internees who had been associated with the Tessaku. In 1981 Fujita edited an anthology of selected writings from the Nanka Bungei published under the title Nanka Bungei Senshu [characters], 1965 - 1980. In the succeeding years, he published his own fictional works, beginning with Nochi no Kokei [characters] in 1982 followed by Tachinoki no Kisetsu [characters] in 1984, the first two novels in a projected trilogy spanning the prewar, wartime, and postwar periods. Unfortunately, he never completed the third volume.
    The Akira Fujita Papers consist of diaries, 1946, 1978-1989; drafts, galleys, and manuscripts; incoming correspondence files, 1972-1989; personal memorabilia; copies of Fujita's published writings; and books by Nanka Bungei writers and others. The incoming correspondence files include letters from Nanka Bungei writers, members, and associates, 1972-1992, letters from Japanese scholars, writers, and publishers, 1976-1989; letters from Fujita family relatives in Japan, 1971-1987; letters and cards from Fujita family friends, 1972-1986; and miscellaneous letters, 1973 - 1986.

    Scope and Content

    Collection consists of diaries, manuscripts, drafts, galleys, incoming correspondence files, personal memorabilia, copies of Akira Fujita's published writings, and books by Nanka Bungei writers and others. Incoming correspondence files include letters from Nanka Bungei writers, members, and associates; letters from Japanese scholars, writers and publishers; letters from Fujita family members in Japan; letters and cards from Fujita family friends; and miscellaneous letters.
    Most of the collection is in Japanese.

    Organization and Arrangement

    Arranged in the following series:
    1. Diaries: 1946 & 1978-89 (Boxes 1-5).
    2. Manuscripts (Boxes 6-8).
    3. Incoming correspondence files (Boxes 9-16).
    4. Personal memorabilia (Boxes 17-18).
    5. Published works (Boxes 19-25).
    6. Publications of Nanka Bungei writers (Boxes 26-28).
    7. Publications of other writers (Boxes 29-32).

    Indexing Terms

    The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library's online public access catalog.

    Subjects

    Fujita, Akira, 1920- --Archives.
    Nanka Bungei (Literary society).
    American literature--Japanese American authors--Archival resources.
    Japanese literature--California, Southern--Archival resources.

    Genres and Forms of Material

    Diaries.

    Related Material

    Japanese American Research Project - Fading Footsteps of the Issei (Collection 2010)  . Available at the Department of Special Collections, UCLA.