Definition of issei in English:

Share this entry


Pronunciation: /ˈēsā/

noun (plural same)

North American
A Japanese immigrant to North America. Compare with nisei and sansei.
Example sentences
  • It's been almost 100 years since the issei, or first-generation Japanese Americans, moved to Bainbridge, and today there are several ways to experience their heritage.
  • The Japanese form of primogeniture dictated, for the issei generation of women, that the transfer of familial power and property was from husband to first-born son.
  • Many critics have observed that Yamamoto is not unsympathetic to the plight of issei men.


Japanese, literally 'first generation'.

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: is·sei

Share this entry

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.