Reckoning: The Japanese American fight for redress and reparations

RECKONING is an multimedia experience about the Japanese American fight for redress and reparations in the 1980s — and the lessons it holds for communities seeking justice and healing today. The piece focuses specifically on the role of Chicago’s Japanese American community in the broader movement. (from the Reckoning website)

Written and produced by Katherine Nagasawa

Web design and development
Paula Friedrich

Illustrations
Cori Nakamura Lin

Video production assistance
Matthew Zhou


I worked with producer Kat Nagasawa from the early stages of this project. The goal was to tell the complex journey of Japanese Americans’ they sought to heal the trauma of their incarceration during World War II. The illustrations contributed to a multimedia curriculum– including interactive interviews and archival material– intended for educational settings. Kat and I collaborated on critical narrative choices at every stage of production. We co-created scenes for the five chapters, deciding to use a visual analogy of an orb of light to represent individuals’ personal story. The orbs are hidden, released, and ignited throughout the curriculum as the community confronted shame and built power.

The chapter headers are animated to emphasize the action of connection and release.