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Japan is currently the only advanced industrial democracy with a fourth-generation immigrant problem. As other industrialized countries face the challenges of incorporating post-war immigrants, Japan continues to struggle with the incorporation of pre-war immigrants and their descendants. Whereas others have focused on international norms, domestic institutions, and recent immigration, this book argues that contemporary immigration and citizenship politics in Japan reflect the strategic interaction between state efforts to control immigration and grassroots movements by multi-generational Korean resident activists to gain rights and recognition specifically as permanently settled foreign residents of Japan. Based on in-depth interviews and fieldwork conducted in Tokyo, Kawasaki, and Osaka, this book aims to further our understanding of democratic inclusion in Japan by analyzing how those who are formally excluded from the political process voice their interests and what factors contribute to the effective representation of those interests in public debate and policy.
Erin Aeran Chung is the Charles D. Miller Assistant Professor of East Asian Politics and Co-Director of the Racism, Immigration, and Citizenship (RIC) Program in the Department of Political Science at The Johns Hopkins University. Previously, she was an Advanced Research Fellow at Harvard University's Program on US-Japan Relations and a Japan Foundation Fellow at Saitama University in Urawa, Japan. Her articles on citizenship, noncitizen political engagement, and comparative racial politics have been published in the Du Bois Review and Asian Perspective. In 2009, she was awarded an Abe Fellowship by the Social Science Research Council to conduct research in Japan and Korea for her second book project on immigrant incorporation in ethnic democracies.