Healthcare and Citizenship in the Context of World War II Japanese American Internment

Author(s): Stacey Camp

Year: 2019


This is an abstract from the "Archaeologies of Health, Wellness, and Ability" session, at the 84th annual meeting of the Society for American Archaeology.

During World War II, approximately 120,000 individuals of Japanese heritage were incarcerated by the United States government. One-third of those unjustly incarcerated were legal American citizens. This talk examines the types of medicine and healthcare made available to imprisoned Japanese Americans based on their citizenship status. Japanese Americans who had American citizenship were generally imprisoned in War Relocation Authority (WRA) prisons, while Japanese Americans who were unable to obtain citizenship due to the exclusionary laws of the time and who were considered "dangerous" were incarcerated in Department of Justice prisons. The latter prisons were required to follow to the conditions outlined in the Geneva Convention, which stipulates the types of healthcare prisoners of war and non-citizens in enemy territory were to receive. How did a prisoner’s citizenship standing affect their access to medical facilities and proper medical care at these two types of prisons?

Cite this Record

Healthcare and Citizenship in the Context of World War II Japanese American Internment. Stacey Camp. Presented at The 84th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Albuquerque, NM. 2019 ( tDAR id: 450950)

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 24733