University Of Tasmania

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'I Love Driving!' Alternative Constructions of Hmong Femininity in the West

journal contribution
posted on 2023-05-16, 11:12 authored by Roberta JulianRoberta Julian
This paper explores the social and cultural construction of femininity among young Hmong women in the western diaspora. Young Hmong women attending high school in the west find themselves located between competing and sometimes contradictory discourses in relation to gender as they are exposed to Hmong cultural ‘tradition’ and western educational values. The paper examines the strategies adopted by young Hmong women in Tasmania, Australia as they attempt to negotiate through competing sets of expectations to construct positive images of Hmong womanhood acceptable to both the local Hmong community and the wider society. It is argued that alternative constructions of Hmong femininity emerging in Australia and the United States challenge the core of Hmong social organization as ‘imagined’ in the West. The empirical and analytical discussion is located within a theoretical framework which focuses on the intersection of class, gender and ethnicity within the context of Australian multiculturalism.


Publication title

Race, Gender & Class: Studies in Australia, Canada and U.S.








School of Social Sciences


University of New Orleans

Place of publication

New Orleans

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  • Restricted

Socio-economic Objectives

Expanding knowledge in human society

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