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Outline Of "So Far From the Bamboo Grove"

So Far From the Bamboo Grove (The Novel) Outline


This true story tells of a family’s struggle to survive and reunite while overcoming many obstacles.


Yoko Kawashina and her family live a safe secure life as government officials in North Korea.


The family must escape hostile North Korean Communists.


Yoko and her mother flee to war- torn Japan.


Her brother, separated from the family, tries to survive ad rejoin the family.


After the mother dies, Yoko and her sister, Ko, try to make it home and hope to be reunited with their brother.


Japanese Invasion of Korea (Japanese History from Yoko K.W. Link)

-Because of its strategic location between Japan, China, and Russia, who controls Korea has been fought over for many years.


Treaties were formed with China and wars were fought between Japan and Russia to give Korea to the Japanese.


Japanese controlled Korea since 1910, denying Korean citizens many basic rights.


In 1945, China, Great Britan, Soviet Union, and the US set up a trustee ship to government Korea.


Korea has divided along the 38th parallel with the Soviet Union occupying the North and the US occupying the South


In 1948, two republics were officially recognized as North and South Korea.


Japanese Customs (From 1st Link Wikipedia)

There is a strong code of diquette in Japan that dictates social behavior.

Bathing is considered an essential and important ritual in everyday life.


Bowing is taught to children at a very young age and companies provide formal training to their employees on performing it correctly.


Whenever Japanese play host to others, they attempt to make the guest feel that everything is taken care of so the guest can just relax.


In the Japanese culture, people are addressed by various titles. The titles are: chan = female friends, Kun = male friends, san = adults, samo = gods or buddas.


Letter writing still remains important in Japanese culture and follows a certain format.


Yoko Kawashima Watkins

Yoko Kawashima Watkins, the author of the book, “So Far From the Bamboo Grove,” was born in Japan in 1933.


She lived a comfortable life in North Korea as a Japanese government official’s daughter.


The family practiced Japanese customs


In 1945, as Japan was losing WWII, Yoko made her way back to Japan.


Yoko finished high school, went to college, and worked as a translator were she met her husband.


They transferred to the US and Yoko began her booking in 1976.


Refugee Camps

The definition of a refugee camp is a temporary camp built to care for people who fear persecution.


Camps are usually built and run by governments, the United Nations, or an organization like the Red Cross or NGOs.


Usually refugee camps are temporarily but some have been permanent settlements.



Refugee camps provide: sleeping facilities, hygiene facilities, medical supplies, communication equipment.


People stay in these camps until it is safe to return home.



17 countries, including the US, accept refugees from refugee camps.





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