One of the options for a woman who got into a bad picture marriage, was to run away, and there are
different reports and announcements form the newspapers of the time, saying someone's wife had run away
with another man and he was looking for them, etc. But this was not an easy option. A runaway woman
would have to remain relatively isolated from the Japanese community, and it people learned that she had
run away, she'd be ostracized. In the West Coast's anti-Asian context, the Japanese community was the
only haven people had, and to be ostracized form that would be extremely difficult. The reports in the
papers, besides being a way to sell papers, were another form of social control; the papers were completely
against running away, and said so.
Was it possible for a woman to leave her husband? Yes, possible, but very difficult. Societal norms were
very opposed to it. In Japan, both sees of parents would be opposed to a woman leaving her husband.
She counted on her husband for her livelihood, and there were not many opportunities for a woman to
make a living. Plus, it would be considered a great stigma. She would have a very difficult time
THE CONTAINMENT PERIOD, 1924-40
The influx of women into the US Japanese community transformed it, from a sojourner to a settler society.
The men could now consider moving out of wage labor(construction, harvesting) into family-owned farms
and businesses. Farming was a respected occupation in Japan and many Japanese in the US went into
truck farming, using intensive farming methods to produce an enormous amount of produce. Having little
money and being discriminated against in buying land, Japanese often bought land that had been logged or
mined, and put a lot of work into land reclamation and making it produce. They generally had small, under
40-acre plots, and sometimes had scattered plots. By 1940, about 1/2 of the Japanese and Japanese
Americans were into farming. Though they only owned about 1% of the farmland, they controlled about
43% of the specialty produce market($37 million of produce). They organized produce associations by the
type of produce grown, and strove to give each other better and faster service. they also developed
VERTICAL CONTROL of their businesses; one family or several families that worked together would
control the process from planting and harvesting to selling the produce to the consumer, thus helping one
another and avoiding exploitative middlemen.
WOMEN'S DOUBLE DAY
Farming women usually worked in the field with their husband and children, as well as doing all of he
arduous domestic labor for the family; hand washing, ironing, cooking over a fire or wood stove, making
clothes, candles, soap, etc., and also, if there were hired laborers, cooking over a fire or wood stove,
making clothes, candle, soap, etc, and also, it there were hired laborers , cooking for them as well. Many
nisei women tell stories of their own mothers working from 5 a,m. until past midnight. Japanese men