The Hmong And American Immigrant Experience

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Ever wonder how life is being an immigrant living in the US? Or the types of events that occur as an immigrant converts into being an American? This book, I Begin My Life All Over: The Hmong and the American Immigrant Experience by Lillian Faderman with Ghia Xiong, is about the ending life as a Hmong leading into becoming an American. It discusses the experiences that thirty-six real life people go through in life as they become Americans. The book is divided into two parts. The first section, The End of a Way of Life, discusses the type of village lived in, how the escape came about and the various camps that were set up for those who escaped. The second section, Becoming American, was about the arrival into America, the various religions and medical aids, the daily duties of women and men, the conflicts of equality between the various generations, the "gangs," and the life of being an American.

Each section contains short explanations of various Hmongs to the events experienced during their life of becoming an American.

Village life isn't as pleasant as it is in America. Hmong life changed very little throughout generations. A simple description of a Hmong home would be: the roof was made of materials such as elephant grass or palm leaves, the sides were of shingles or split bamboo, and the floors were "hard-stomped dirt" which wood fires could be made to cook. As many as twenty people, lived in a home of not more than a thousand square feet. Almost all the people able to do labor work worked in the farm. Occasionally one child, usually being a boy, would be sent to school so that at least one person in the family would be literate. The traditional religion as a...