HMONG STUDIES NEWSLETTER
JULY-AUGUST 2006

ONLINE PUBLICATION OF THE HMONG STUDIES INTERNET RESOURCE
CENTER (www.hmongstudies.org)

ABOUT THIS PUBLICATION: The Hmong Studies Resource Newsletter has since 2001 provided a very unique
and consistent source of up-to-date information about new works in Hmong Studies and
Hmong-related research resources. To access back issues of this online publication dating back to
2001 visit:
http://www.hmongstudies.org/HmongStudiesNewslettersindex.html

Comprehensive and frequently updated online subject bibliographies of Hmong Studies works are available at:
http://www.hmongstudies.org/HmongBibliographies.htm

Hmong Studies Newsletter Editor: Mark E. Pfeifer, PhD, Texas A and M University

ABOUT THE HMONG STUDIES INTERNET RESOURCE CENTER:

The Hmong Studies Internet Resource Center (www.hmongstudies.org) is the online home of the Hmong
Studies Journal academic journal. The unique scholarly site also contains extensive bibliographies in Hmong
Studies as well as census data and an online research paper library.

Many of the Hmong Studies articles, books and dissertations listed in this newsletter and on the website may be
found at the Hmong Resource Center Library at the Hmong Cultural Center in Saint Paul, perhaps the largest
depository of Hmong Studies academic articles and dissertations in the United States. The Hmong Resource
Center Library of the Hmong Cultural Center is open to the public Monday through Friday from Noon – 3 PM.
Other times are available by appointment. The Hmong Resource Center is located in the Hmong Cultural
Center’s offices at 995 University Avenue, Suite 214 in Saint Paul. Phone: 651-917-9937. Librarian: Ray
Murray. E-Mail:
moswei11@comcast.net

Hmong Resource Center Library Online Catalog: Walk-ins are welcome and there are many displays to look at
that teach about the Hmong people, their history, their culture and their experience in the U.S. over the past 25
years. Larger group tours and educational sessions may be arranged in advance.

NEW WORKS IN HMONG STUDIES:

Books/Theses/Reports

Yer J. Thao (2006). The Mong Oral Tradition: Cultural Memory in the Absence of Written Language.
Jefferson, North Carolina: McFarland & Company, Incorporated Publishers.
A work published in June
2006. The following abstract is provided by the publisher. “In 1975, after years of struggle, Communists seized
control of the government of Laos. Members of the Mong culture who had helped the U.S. Central Intelligence
Agency in their quest to halt the spread of Communism were forced to move to America as political refugees.
The Mong, with their strong culture of oral traditions and beliefs, were plunged into a multicultural society where
the written word was prevalent. As a result, their oral customs are now being slowly eroded and replaced with a
written tradition. Desperate to hold on to their cultural identity and continue the traditions of their ancestors, the
Mong still struggle with the dilemma this change in literary perception has caused. Compiled from numerous
interviews, this volume explores the lives of 13 Mong elders. With emphasis on their unique oral tradition and
cultural practices, the book discusses Mong rituals, tribal customs, religious beliefs and educational
experiences. The main focus of the work, however, is the lifestyle the elders maintained while living in the
mountains of Laos. In their own words, they describe their childhood, communities, religious rituals and cultural
traditions as well as the ongoing struggle of adjustment to their new homeland. The work also delves into the
Mong perceptions of industrialization and the generational conflict that immersion into a literate society has
caused. The author himself is a member of the Mong culture and brings a personal perspective to preserving
the oral traditions of this unique ethnicity. The work is also indexed.”

Lhee Noei Vang. (2005). Sweet blood: Hmong decision making and experiences in living with
diabetes. M.A. Thesis, California State University, Long Beach.
This graduate thesis explores the beliefs
Hmong diabetics have about diabetes and their health care decisions. Ideas about the cause, symptoms, and
treatment of diabetes were analyzed to provide insight into their decision making. Health care specialists were
also interviewed to ascertain the extent of their knowledge about Hmong health care beliefs and how their
Hmong diabetic patients make health care decisions. Narratives were drawn from in-depth interviews and
included in this study to give context to the findings. A decision model was created to understand how Hmong
diabetics make health care choices. Diabetes was believed to be a result of natural causes, yet symptoms of
diabetes were interpreted as caused by both natural and supernatural phenomena. The researcher observed
that health care decisions depend upon cultural beliefs, social and economic status and social support.

Academic Journal Articles/Other

Laurel Edinburgh, Elizabeth Saewyc, Tru Thao and Carolyn Levitt. (2006).   “Sexual exploitation of
very young Hmong girls.” Journal of Adolescent Health 39(1): 111-118.
Excerpts from the journal article’s
abstract: “Recent increases in Hmong girls referred to a Midwest hospital-based child advocacy center
prompted this comparison of abuse experiences for Hmong extra-familial sexual abuse cases versus peers.”
“Methods: Retrospective chart review of all girls, aged 10 to 14 years, with extra-familial sexual abuse 1998-
2003 (n = 226). Fourteen percent of cases were Hmong (n = 32). Demographics, risk behaviors, abuse
experiences, physical findings and legal outcomes were compared for Hmong (H) and Other (O) girls using chi-
square. Multivariate logistic regressions explored differences in gynecologic findings and sexually transmitted
disease (STD) results.” “Results: Hmong girls were more likely to be runaways (90% H vs. 8% O), truant (97% H
vs. 13% O), self-mutilating (38% H vs. 10% O), and suicidal (41% H vs. 21% O). Seventy-seven percent of
Hmong reported gang rape, prostitution, or multiple assaults versus 16% Others; most had 5+ perpetrators
(69% H vs. 2% O) and 5+ assaults (75% H vs. 24% O, both p < .001). Gynecologic findings were more
prevalent among Hmong girls (63% H vs. 21% O). Controlling for penetration, number of partners/assaults, and
acuity at examination, Hmong ethnicity predicted gynecologic findings (adjusted odds ration [AOR] = 6.57).
Hmong girls were more likely to have a positive chlamydia screen (36% H vs. 4% O, p < .001), but only number
of perpetrators was an independent predictor (AOR = 15.09). Most cases were prosecuted, but Hmong had
higher prosecution rates (83% H vs. 57% O, p < .001). Conclusions: Hmong girl assault experiences were
markedly more severe than peers. Health care providers need appropriate knowledge of Hmong culture to
conduct forensic examinations. Abused Hmong girls need culturally sensitive, developmentally appropriate after-
care that helps connect them back with families and school.”

Claudio O. Delang. (2005). “The Market for Medicinal Plants in SAPA and Hanoi Vietnam.” Economic
Botany 59(4): 377-385.
From the abstract: “This article describes the market for medicinal plants sold in the
Vietnamese town of Sapa as well as in nine different markets in the Vietnamese capital city, Hanoi. A total of 44
medicinal plants were identified botanically, 27 of which are on sale in Sapa and 28 in Hanoi. Most buyers of
medicinal plants in Sapa are members of the Vietnamese middle classes who go to Sapa on holidays. Medicinal
plants are gathered or cultivated predominantly by members of ethnic minority groups (Hmong and Dao) who
live in small hamlets, some located several hours from the town of Sapa. Sapa is one of the poorest districts in
Vietnam with a GDP per household of only U.S. $322 in 2005, so the cash that people are able to earn from the
sale of medicinal plants is very important. The article argues that the social roles of the weekend market in
Sapa are equally important, as the market helps ethnic minorities to fulfil their needs for a social life beyond the
village.”

Jessica R. Goodkind. (2006). “Promoting Hmong Refugees’ Well-Being Through Mutual Learning:
Valuing Knowledge, Culture, and Experience.” American Journal of Community Psychology 37(1/2):
77-93.
From the abstract: “Refugees who resettle in a new country face numerous struggles, including
overcoming past traumas and coping with post-migration stressors, such as lack of meaningful social roles,
poverty, discrimination, lack of environmental mastery, and social isolation. Thus, in addition to needing to
learn concrete language skills and gain access to resources and employment, it is important for refugees to
become a part of settings where their experiences, knowledge, and identity are valued and validated. The
Refugee Well-Being Project (RWBP) was developed to promote the well-being of Hmong refugees by creating
settings for mutual learning to occur between Hmong adults and undergraduate students. The RWBP had two
major components: (1) Learning Circles, which involved cultural exchange and one-on-one learning
opportunities, and (2) an advocacy component, which involved undergraduates advocating for and transferring
advocacy skills to Hmong families to increase their access to resources in their communities. The project was
evaluated using a mixed quantitative and qualitative approach. This article discusses data from qualitative
interviews with participants, during which the importance of reciprocal helping relationships and mutual learning
emerged as significant themes.”

Bic Ngo. (2006). “Learning from the Margins: The Education of Southeast and South Asian Americans
in Context.” Race, Ethnicity & Education 9(1): 51-65.
Quoting from the article abstract: “This article
explicates the diversity within the Asian American community by focusing on Southeast and South Asian
American students. Focusing on these two groups is important given their recent migration (relative to other
groups) and tenuous position within Asian American research, discourse, and representation. In particular, this
article contends that the image of Asian American success masks the contexts--economic, social, and cultural
challenges--that mark the educational experiences of many Southeast Asian and South Asian American
students. It explores (1) issues of cultural capital; (2) negotiations of identity, gender and generation; and (3)
experiences of racism. By highlighting the social and cultural contexts of the education of Southeast and South
Asian students, it reveals the many ways students are learning from the margins and the price of "success" that
is often diminished by the image of Asian American achievement.” Hmong-American students are among the
groups included in the case study.

Stephen A. Small, Geetika Tiwari and Mary Huser. (2006). “The cultural education of academic
evaluators: Lessons from a University-Hmong community partnership.” American Journal of
Community Psychology 37 (3-4): 357-364.
 From the publisher’s abstract: “This article explores some of the
lessons a university-based evaluation team learned while attempting to hire, retain, and work with staff
members from a local Hmong community. These staff members were hired to assist a federally-funded
community collaborative with implementing and evaluating a family strengthening program for Hmong families
with adolescents. Over the course of two years, a succession of individuals were hired and resigned from a key
staff position. These resignations occurred at critical points in the project, undermining a critical component of
the program’s evaluation. Through interviews, observations, self-reflection, and feedback from colleagues and
reviewers, a better understanding of the reasons for these difficulties began to emerge. The challenges
examined in this article help to illustrate some of the complexities faced by academics when conducting a
community-based project with an underserved racial ethnic population. The article concludes by discussing
some of the lessons learned and what they might suggest for others doing similar types of work.”

Dennis Trudeau. (2006). “Politics of belonging in the construction of landscapes: place-making,
boundary-drawing and exclusion.” Cultural Geographies 13(3): 421-443.
In this paper, the author, a
Social Geographer, explores “the connection of boundaries, belonging and landscapes by thinking about how
landscapes become spatially bounded scenes that visually communicate what belongs and what does not.” To
investigate related issues, the author considers a controversy surrounding the operation of a slaughterhouse
in Hugo, Minnesota, which was used extensively for Ua Dab - a Hmong tradition of ritual animal sacrifice. The
researcher posits that "the discourses and practices surrounding efforts to remove the slaughterhouse from
Hugo, on the one hand, and to have it remain in Hugo, on the other, offer a case through which to explore the
politics of belonging and the boundaries that this creates in constructing landscapes."

Zha Blong Xiong, Arunya Tuicomepee and Laura LaBlanc. (2006). “Hmong Immigrants' Perceptions of
Family Secrets and Recipients of Disclosure.” Families in Society 87(2):  231-239.
From this journal
article’s abstract: “The purpose of this study is to examine the issues Hmong immigrants considered family
secrets and to whom they would disclose their secrets when these secrets became problematic to them. Ninety-
nine Hmong immigrant adults (39 males and 60 females), with ages ranging from 18 to 89 participated in this
study. Content analysis found more than half of the participants considered marital issues to be secrets, while
descriptive statistics found spousal arguments about family chores were the most secretive, followed by
arguments about children, and overspending.”

ARTICLES ABOUT NEWSLETTER EDITOR MARK E. PFEIFER'S LEGACY OF
WORK AT THE HMONG CULTURAL CENTER:  
The Hmong Times, and Asian American Press
of St. Paul, MN ran extensive articles in July about the 6 years of work of the newsletter editor Mark Pfeifer at
the Hmong Cultural Center due to his departure for an Academic Librarian position in the Texas A and M
University system. A goodbye letter from Mark Pfeifer to the Hmong community in Minnesota appeared in the
Hmong Today newspaper of Saint Paul in July as well.
These three articles from the end of July 2006 may be
read by clicking this link:

IMPORTANT NEW RESOURCE AVAILABLE - ONLINE ANNOTATED
BIBLIOGRAPHY OF HMONG STUDIES WORKS 1996-2006

A unique new Hmong Studies resource is now available by visiting the above link. The comprehensive and one-
of-a-kind
Online Annotated Bibliography of Hmong Studies Works contains full reference information and
descriptive summaries of more than 600 Hmong-Studies works published since 1996. Works are organized into
topical subcategories including Dictionaries, Bibliographies and Reference Works; Hmong History and
Contemporary Affairs in China, Hmong History and Contemporary Affairs in Southeast Asia; Hmong Culture;
The War in Laos and Refugee Resettlement Issues; Hmong Families, Parenting and Gender Roles; Settlement
Patterns and Socioeconomic Incorporation; Hmong Cultural Maintenance and Adaptation; Race Relations, The
Law, and Political Incorporation; Literacy and Educational Adaptation; Physical and Mental Health; Personal
Narratives of Hmong Americans; Juvenile Literature and Curriculum Materials for Teachers; Fiction; Videos and
Internet Resources.

HMONG STUDIES JOURNAL VOLUME 6 AVAILABLE FOR ORDER IN A SPECIAL
PRINT EDITION:

The Hmong Resource Center of the Hmong Cultural Center has published the physical hard copy
edition of volume 6 of the Hmong Studies Journal. An internet-based journal, The Hmong Studies
Journal is the only peer-reviewed academic publication devoted to the scholarly discussion of
Hmong history, Hmong culture, Hmong people, and other facets of the Hmong experience in the U.
S., Asia and around the world. The Hmong Studies Journal has published 8 online issues in 6
volumes with a total of 43 scholarly articles since 1996.

HMONG STUDIES JOURNAL VOLUME 6 CONTENT AND ARTICLES

Recent Works in Hmong Studies: Annotated Bibliography by Mark E. Pfeifer, Hmong Resource
Center Library, Hmong Cultural Center, Saint Paul.

Who is Hmong? Questions and Evidence from the U.S. Census by Wayne Carroll and Victoria
Udalova, University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire.

Hmong and Lao Refugee Women: Reflections of a Hmong-American Woman Anthropologist by Dia
Cha, Saint Cloud State University.

Hmong Resettlement in French Guiana by Patrick F. Clarkin, University of Massachusetts, Boston.

The Myth of Sonom, the Hmong King; by Robert Entenmann, Saint Olaf College

Hmong Cosmology: Proposed Model, Preliminary Insights by Vincent K. Her, University of Wisconsin-
Milwaukee.

The Shaping of Traditions: Agriculture and Hmong Society by Gary Yia Lee

What is the actual number of the (H)mong in the World by Jacques Lemoine

Hmong Refugees Death Fugue by Sheng-mei Ma, Michigan State University

Continuing the promise: Recruiting and preparing Hmong-American educators for Central
Wisconsin by Leslie McClain-Ruelle, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point and Kao Xiong,
University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Southeast Asian Fathers Experiences with Adolescents: Challenges and Change by Zha Blong Xiong
and Daniel F. Detzner, University of Minnesota.

Research Notes from the Field: Tracing the Path of the Ancestors A Visit to the Hmong in China by
Kou Yang, California State University, Stanislaus.

Also available for order are four additional unique scholarly publications – An Annotated
Bibliography of Hmong-Related Works 1996-2004, Hmong 2000 Census Publication in collaboration
with Hmong National Development and several scholars of Hmong-American Studies and two
previous issues of the Hmong Studies Journal.

Click this link for further information about these publications as well as ordering info

Click this link to view the electronic edition of the Hmong Studies Journal Volume 6


HMONG STUDIES JOURNAL PARTNERS WITH PROQUEST'S ETHNIC
NEWSWATCH:

The Hmong Studies Journal has recently been approached and reached agreement to have all of its content
distributed in digital format to hundreds of academic libraries around the world through ProQuest's Ethnic
NewsWatch. Other peer-reviewed scholarly journals related to Ethnic Studies distributed by Ethnic NewsWatch
include: Research in African Literatures, American Indian Quarterly, Pacific Historical Review, The Journal of
Blacks in Higher Education, Jewish Social Studies, Isreal Studies, History and Memory, Ethnic Studies Review,
Diverse Issues in Higher Education, Cultural Survival Quarterly, Canadian Ethnic Studies, Race, Gender, and
Class, and The Social Studies.

UPDATE OF WWW HMONG HOMEPAGE INCLUDES NEW HMONG COOKBOOK
SITE AND OTHER NEW LINKS:

The Hmong Resource Center is partnering with Craig Rice to provide up-to-date content related to
community educational events, Hmong resources and Hmong Studies for the WWW Hmong
Homepage. Craig Rice co-founded the WWW Hmong Homepage in early 1994. The website was one
of the first to provide substantive educational resources related to Hmong-Americans and Hmong
around the world. The WWW Hmong Homepage is still one of the most heavily visited and linked
educational websites related to the Hmong. The latest update includes a link to a new Hmong
Cookbook website. To view the WWW Hmong Homepage and learn about upcoming educational
events visit:
www.hmongnet.org


HMONG RESOURCE FAIR 2006 (OCTOBER 21, 2006)

The 5th Annual Hmong Resource Fair will be held October 21, 2006 at Arlington High School in Saint
Paul, MN.
Visit this link to view the new website for the Hmong Resource Fair.
Photos and the program from last year's Hmong Resource Fair may be viewed here.

HMONG STUDIES MESSAGE BOARD:

A moderated message board intended as a forum for information about existing and new
research resources in Hmong Studies is available at:
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/hmongstudies/