Racism In Snow Falling On Cedars

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Register to read the introduction… In Snow Falling on Cedars, the Japanese are often described in a cognitive manner. For example, Ishmael receives much ridicule because of his support for Japanese and this is evident in a phone call he receives one night after the trial. Ishmael answers his phone and an anonymous caller states, "Japanese lovers get their balls cut off and shoved down their throat" (Snow). We also witness derogatory statements such as "Japs go home" painted on houses as the Japanese are driven away in Army trucks. Although there is little depiction of bodily injuries and bodily functions used as a portrayal of hostility toward the Japanese-Americans, one example of terministic screening used by director Scott Hicks is the amputation of Ishmael's arm. During his amputation in the hospital, Ishmael reveals for the first time a sense of strong hatred for the Japanese race along with his frustration with Hatsue yelling out, "that fucking Jap bitch" (Snow). Another example of how spoken language is used to portray the great amount of hostility toward the Japanese-American race is displayed through the statement, "you can't read Japs." Although this statement is not as harsh as the statement made by Ishmael, it is still considered as an example of how racism toward the Japanese-American race is exposed in this film through the use of emotive language. We sense the frustration many Americans felt toward the Japanese-American after the attack on Pearl Harbor. By each of these examples, we are able to perceive how terministic screening is used through both visual and spoken language to expose the extreme racism toward Japanese-Americans during the time of World War …show more content…
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