L I T E R A T U R E A N D C U L T U R E I Begin My Life All Over: The Hmong and the American Immigrant Experience by Lillian Faderman with Ghia Xiong. Boston: Beacon Press, 1998. 262 pages, cloth $25. In I Begin My Life All Over: The Hmong and the American Immigrant Experience, thirty-six people speak of their hopes and sorrows as they struggle to adjust to life in America, straddling the border between Hmong and American cultures, past and future, traditional and modern worlds. The speakers range from an elevenyear-old girl who calls herself "an American kid" to a sixty-five-year-old musician, an expert player of the qeej (bamboo pipes), who now needs his children to help him negotiate the streets of Fresno. "I always find myself lost in this world," he says, echoing the disorientation felt by many of the older generation. Here are the words of Hmong shamans and elders alongside those of young gang members. Here, too, are the voices of mothers and fathers who carried their children through the jungle and across the Mekong Delta; children who lost parents along this difficult journey; and children who
Manoa – University of Hawai'I Press
Published: Apr 1, 2000
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