noun, often capitalized
ni·​sei | \ nē-ˈsā How to pronounce nisei (audio) , ˈnē-ˌ \
plural nisei

Definition of nisei

: a son or daughter of Japanese immigrants who is born and educated in America and especially in the U.S.

Examples of nisei in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web But growing up near downtown L.A. in the ’30s and ’40s exposed her to the customs of her many nisei Japanese friends, too. Scott Timberg, Los Angeles Magazine, 29 Jan. 2018 By then the Army was enlisting nisei soldiers to fight in Africa and Europe. Smithsonian, 29 Jan. 2017 Kashiwagi said that many of the seniors were nisei — second-generation Japanese Americans born in the U.S. — who had spent their youth detained in World War II incarceration camps. NBC News, 6 Oct. 2017 The miniature spelling master has become an Internet celebrity, impressing people with her ability to crack words that would stump most adults, such as Panglossian, Baedeker, nisei, and Croesus. The Washington Post, Twin Cities, 8 Mar. 2017 By then the Army was enlisting nisei soldiers to fight in Africa and Europe. Smithsonian, 2 May 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'nisei.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of nisei

1929, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for nisei

Japanese, literally, second generation, from ni second + sei generation

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Cite this Entry

“Nisei.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 2 Dec. 2021.

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