Naomi Iizuka

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Naomi Iizuka (born April 22, 1965) is a Japanese playwright.


  • I think it is dangerous to run away from history. I am much more interested in looking at something difficult and really fraught with a lot of problems and then challenging it from a close perspective, as opposed to just not dealing with it when creating the characters or the story.
  • In terms of being an Asian American writer, I'm mixed race. I think there are issues about being racially mixed that are different that for people who are Japanese-American, or Korean-American, or Chinese-American in background. People don't know where I come from. My father is Japanese. My mother is Latina. There is a line in the play, "I look at you and I don't know what i'm seeing." I think a lot of people look at me and don't know what they're seeing. There are issues that people who are of mixed heritage deal with that are complicated in terms of finding their home in a specific ethnic group.
  • My father's Japanese and my mother's half Spanish, half Cuban, but I grew up in a household where we spoke English. I learned about my family in bits and pieces. There are things that still peek out in the telling, like my father's sister will tell me something he neglected. I think you find out about the mysteries of your origins in unexpected ways.

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