Hmong and American: From Refugees to Citizens

Hmong and American: From Refugees to Citizens

Insightful, accessible, and eye-opening essays consider the life journeys of Hmong-American individuals, families, and communities as they participate in creating the ethnic and social fabric of this nation.

Farmers in Laos, U.S. allies during the Vietnam War, refugees in Thailand, citizens of the Western world—the stories of the Hmong who now live in America have been told in detail through books and articles and oral histories over the past several decades. Like any immigrant group, members of the first generation may yearn for the past as they watch their children and grandchildren find their way in the dominant culture of their new home. For Hmong people born and educated in the United States, a definition of self often includes traditional practices and tight-knit family groups but also a distinctly Americanized point of view. How do Hmong Americans negotiate the expectations of these two very different cultures?

In an engaging series of essays featuring a range of writing styles, leading scholars, educators, artists, and community activists explore themes of history, culture, gender, class, family, and sexual orientation, weaving their own stories into depictions of a Hmong American community where people continue to develop complex identities that are collectively shared but deeply personal as they help to redefine the multicultural America of today.

Advance Praise:
Hmong and American clearly articulates what it means to be Hmong in the U.S. context. The inclusion of diverse voices and perspectives makes for an illuminating volume.”
Chia Youyee Vang, author of Hmong in Minnesota and Hmong America: Reconstructing Community in Diaspora

“A comprehensive set of essays on Hmong American identity, exploring the facets of gender, age, sexual orientation, religion, language, the arts, and transnational connections among Hmong communities. With both academic and community-based perspectives, this anthology provides a unique and valuable contribution to Hmong Studies, Asian American Studies and Ethnic Studies.”
Mark E. Pfeifer, PhD, Editor, Hmong Studies Journal; Lecturer, State University of New York Institute of Technology

Contributors: Mary Louise Buley-Meissner, Amy DeBroux, Jeremy Hein, Vincent K. Her, Don Hones, Gary Yia Lee, Song Lee, Pao Lor, Bic Ngo, Keith Quincy, Chan Vang, Hue Vang, Ka Vang, Kou Vang, May Vang, Ma Lee Xiong, Shervun Xiong, Kao Kalia Yang, Kou Yang.

Vincent K. Her is an assistant professor of cultural anthropology at the University of Wisconsin–La Crosse. Mary Louise Buley-Meissner is an associate professor of English at the University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee. Since 2000 they have collaborated on many projects exploring the Hmong American experience.

Available March 2012 from Minnesota Historical Society Press
Format: $24.95 Paper, 288 pp, 6×9, 54 b&w illustrations, notes, index, bibliography, 1 table
ISBN: 978-0-87351-855-0

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Content by Alison Aten
Minnesota Historical Society Press Publicity Manager