Star Trek homeSkip to main content

George Takei Discusses Internment Camp Experience

Takei spoke in Kyoto, Japan, at a TEDx event

Star Trek's legendary and original Sulu, George Takei, has in recent years enjoyed a career renaissance, become an Internet sensation and emerged as a formidable gay rights activist. But he's never, ever forgotten his past, when, as a child, he -- along with 120,000 other Japanese-American citizens -- spent time incarcerated in barbwired American internment camps during World War II.

Takei is working his way toward Broadway with a musical production called Allegiance, which has been described as a tale of love, war and heroism set within the confines of an internment camp. Takei also -- on June 4 -- spoke in Kyoto, Japan, at a TEDx event, a local, independently organized TEDTalk-like experience held at the Morita Memorial Hall on the campus of Kyoto University of Foreign Studies. Check out this video of Takei's talk, as he references Star Trek: The Original Series, discusses in detail his family, their internment and its aftermath, and pays tribute to the Japanese-American soldiers who went on to fight in World War II.