Passing Down the Legacy

Passing Down the Legacy follows the Bridging Communities youth program in Los Angeles, Seattle and San Francisco. This program was established as a proactive response by Japanese American Citizens League, Nikkei for Civil Rights & Redress and Council on American-Islamic Relations to a number of incidents of hate and intolerance incurred by the American Muslim community in the long aftermath of the 9/11 attacks. Recognizing the similarities that Japanese Americans faced in the aftermath of Pearl Harbor ultimately resulting in Japanese American incarceration, Bridging Communities was meant to build solidarity and partnership between these two communities. This documentary captures the culmination of the program as the students visit Manzanar, Tule Lake and Minidoka where they must face history, connect to the present and learn the importance of taking action for the future.


With the help of the National Park Service Grant this year, and through the Japanese American Citizens League, Marissa Kitazawa (JACL PSW Program Associate) and Alex Margolin (JACL Program Associate) were able to document and follow the Bridging Communities program in Los Angeles, San Francisco and Seattle. The goal of the Bridging Communities Program is to create awareness and dialogue from Japanese American and American Muslim youth through a series of interactive sessions including topics such as: identity, culture, religion, civil rights, community history, and community service.



  • Both Japanese American and Muslim American students say hearing the firsthand stories from the internees had the most impact. The new short documentary, produced by JACL PSW, is made by youth to empower youth in the Japanese and Muslim American communities....

  • 8th annual screening of Soc Doc graduate films at Del Mar Theatre By Scott Rappaport UC Santa Cruz presents the eighth annual exhibition of thesis films from the Film and Digital Media Department’s masters program inSocial Documentation on Wednesday, June 11, at the Del Mar Theater in......

  • SAN FRANCISCO — The Japanese American Citizens League (JACL) announced that a new video, “Bridging Communities, Passing Down the Legacy,” will be released this month....



Founded in 1929, the JACL is the oldest and largest Asian American civil rights organization in the United States.  The JACL monitors and responds to issues that enhance or threaten the civil and human rights of all Americans and implements strategies to effect positive social change, particularly to the Asian Pacific American community.





HD, 24 mins, 2011


Marissa Kitazawa
Alex Margolin


Marissa Kitazawa

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27th Annual Asian Pacific American Awareness Conference - UC Irvine, Student Promoted Access Center for Education and Service (SPACES) - UC San Diego