Snow Falling on Cedars

by

David Guterson

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Hatsue’s mother. She was sent to the U.S. to marry Hisao Imada, who is much poorer than he’d led her to believe. Fujiko has had a difficult life, but she’s worked hard to get where she is, and she has always kept her suffering to herself. She is weary of the white islanders and tries to teach her children about the inherent difference between the Japanese and the hakujin (white people). She is critical of Hatsue’s confidence in her own wants, needs, and identity. She advises her daughter that it is best not to express the fleeting feelings of the heart, and that it is preferable to dwell and suffer in silence.

Fujiko Imada Quotes in Snow Falling on Cedars

The Snow Falling on Cedars quotes below are all either spoken by Fujiko Imada or refer to Fujiko Imada. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Racism and Prejudice Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Vintage edition of Snow Falling on Cedars published in 1995.
Chapter 14 Quotes

“That is the fundamental difference, Hatsue. We bend our heads, we bow and are silent, because we understand that by ourselves, alone, we are nothing at all, dust in a strong wind, while the hakujin believes his aloneness is everything, his separateness is the foundation of his existence. He seeks and grasps, seeks and grasps for the separateness, while we seek union with the Greater Life—you must see that these are distinct paths we are traveling, Hatsue, the hakujin and we Japanese.”

Page Number: 201
Explanation and Analysis:

She was of this place and she was not of this place, and though she might desire to be an American it was clear, as her mother said, that she had the face of America’s enemy and would always have such a face.

Page Number: 205
Explanation and Analysis:
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Fujiko Imada Character Timeline in Snow Falling on Cedars

The timeline below shows where the character Fujiko Imada appears in Snow Falling on Cedars. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 7
Racism and Prejudice Theme Icon
Duty vs. Desire Theme Icon
...so it was important for their daughter to know where she came from. Hatsue’s mother, Fujiko, had been sent to Seattle to marry Hisao, Hatsue’s father, who she falsely believed was... (full context)
Duty vs. Desire Theme Icon
After Hatsue was born, Hisao and Fujiko moved from a shoddy Beacon Hill boardinghouse to a Jackson Street boardinghouse. The Jackson Street... (full context)
Duty vs. Desire Theme Icon
...on San Piedro, too. When she was seven, Hatsue and her sisters worked outside with Fujiko. Hisao sold fish. The family saved their money and eventually were able to lease a... (full context)
Chapter 14
Racism and Prejudice Theme Icon
The Psychological Impact of War  Theme Icon
...island who are hoarding “illegal contraband.” The men confiscate the family’s Japanese belongings, such as Fujiko’s kimono, a sword, a wooden flute that had been in their family for generations, and... (full context)
Racism and Prejudice Theme Icon
The Psychological Impact of War  Theme Icon
Facts vs. Truth Theme Icon
...questions, after which point he’ll be allowed to return home. Hatsue’s sisters begin to cry. Fujiko pleads with the men, but to no avail. “Think of this as a war sacrifice,”... (full context)
Racism and Prejudice Theme Icon
Duty vs. Desire Theme Icon
Fujiko comforts her daughters and urges them to be strong, recalling her journey aboard the Korea... (full context)
Racism and Prejudice Theme Icon
Duty vs. Desire Theme Icon
...her mother’s comments about the hakujin, insisting that not all white people hate the Japanese. Fujiko admits that, yes, not all white people hate the Japanese; but still, she asks her... (full context)
Racism and Prejudice Theme Icon
Duty vs. Desire Theme Icon
Fujiko sympathizes with her daughter, citing the difficulty of their times. Still, she urges her to... (full context)
Racism and Prejudice Theme Icon
Duty vs. Desire Theme Icon
Fujiko says she thinks living among white people has “tainted” her daughter, and “made [her] soul... (full context)
Chapter 15
Racism and Prejudice Theme Icon
The Psychological Impact of War  Theme Icon
...in horse stables and eating only canned figs, white bread, and coffee. The food makes Fujiko sick, and she is ashamed at having to relieve herself in front of others, barely... (full context)
Duty vs. Desire Theme Icon
...Ishmael sent Hatsue. Sumiko opens and reads the love letter before bringing it “regretfully” to Fujiko. Fujiko reads the letter and is shocked and angered, realizing that her suspicions about Hatsue... (full context)
Racism and Prejudice Theme Icon
Duty vs. Desire Theme Icon
Before Fujiko confronts her daughter, a group of boys from the island, including Kabuo, come by the... (full context)
Duty vs. Desire Theme Icon
Fujiko shows the letter to Hatsue, who informs her that the letter is unnecessary: Hatsue will... (full context)
Duty vs. Desire Theme Icon
Kabuo brings the drawers he made for the family’s room, and Fujiko invites him to stay. She does this again, as Kabuo delivers other things for the... (full context)
Chapter 32
The Psychological Impact of War  Theme Icon
Duty vs. Desire Theme Icon
Fujiko tells Ishmael she’d always thought highly of his family. She compliments Ishmael’s newspaper and gives... (full context)