HMONG RESOURCE CENTER OF THE HMONG CULTURAL CENTER, E-MAIL NEWSLETTER, 2003, NO. 6

ABOUT THE HMONG RESOURCE CENTER:

The mission of the Hmong Resource Center is to promote cross-cultural awareness and understanding between
Hmong and non-Hmong though multicultural education.

The Hmong Resource Center of the Hmong Cultural Center is open to the public Monday through Friday from 9
AM – 6 PM. 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. E-Mail: resources@hmongcenter.org. Online Resource
Center Catalog: www.hmongcenter.org/

RECENT RESOURCE CENTER ACQUISITIONS:

Theses and Books

Cha, Dia. (2003). Hmong American Concepts of Health, Healing, and Conventional Medicine. New York:
Routledge. A newly published work that provides a comprehensive overview of traditional and changing Hmong
concepts of health, medicine and healing practices. Chapters in the work discuss the impact of Christianity and
refugee resettlement on Hmong society and health care, the traditional Hmong health system, Hmong American
health care in the state of Colorado, Hmong cultural beliefs related to health, healing and illness and Hmong
health-related behavior. The volume also includes a detailed glossary with explanations of important Hmong
health, medical and spiritual terms.

Her, Kennedee. (2002). Combating Racism, Bigotry, and Prejudice: Preliminary Research for Development of an
Oral History CD on the Cultural Heritage of Hmong Americans. MS Thesis, University of Wisconsin Stout. This
work summarizes the findings from a preliminary study of prejudice and discrimination against Hmong Americans.
Focus groups were conducted with Hmong and non-Hmong in Minnesota and Wisconsin. The author’s findings
indicated that prejudice and discrimination against Hmong were perceived by those interviewed to be the result
of a lack of cultural awareness, cultural misinterpretation, the language barrier, and or the spread of rumors.
The Hmong interviewed had faced the following types of prejudice and discrimination: verbal harassment, poor
services in organizational settings, physical harassment, avoidance in institutional settings and police
mistreatment. The findings of the study were synthesized by the author to facilitate the planning of a CD
intended to increase awareness and appreciation in the broader community of the Hmong cultural heritage.

Yang, Kee. (2002). Hmong Parents’ Perception on the Hmong Parenting Practices. M.A. Thesis, California State
University, Stanislaus. The purpose of this thesis study was to explore the perceptions of a sample of Hmong
parents about appropriate parenting practices and the perceived relationship between parenting practices and
youth involvement in gangs. The research was conducted with a sample of 8 Hmong parents residing in
California. The Resource Center thanks the author for generously donating this work to our collections.

Academic Articles

Liamputtong, Pranee. (2003). “Abortion-It is for Some Women Only! Hmong Women’s Perceptions of Abortion.”
Health Care for Women International 24: 230-241. In this article, the author explores traditional Hmong
explanations about abortion and the ethnomedical knowledge and practices that pertain to it. The researcher
conducted the study among the Hmong community in Melbourne, Australia. She observes abortion is not easily
accepted in the Hmong culture as it is perceived to upset the cosmological balance of society. This has
implications for younger Hmong women who may wish to control their fertility in Australia and elsewhere.

Root, Steven., Rudawski, Anthony., Taylor, Matthew., and Ronald Rochon. (2003). “Attrition of Hmong Students
in Teacher Education Programs.” Bilingual Research Journal 24(1): 137-141. This paper consists of a
descriptive study that addresses student attrition in two Title VII Bilingual Education Career Ladder Programs for
Hmong paraprofessionals and traditional-age college students working towards teacher certification in
Wisconsin. The authors assess the primary factors leading to Hmong student attrition in the two programs. They
conclude with some strategies that might be employed to maximize retention.

Ross, Julie A., Yang, Xie., Kiffmeyer, William R., Bushhouse, Sally., and Leslie L. Robinson. (2003). “Cancer in
the Minnesota Hmong Population.” Cancer 97: 3076-79. The authors of this recently published study screened
the Minnesota Cancer Surveillance System database for Hmong surnames and proportional incidence ratios
(PIRs) were calculated for the period 1988-1999. Compared with all Minnesotans, the authors observed that the
Hmong population had increased rations for nasopharyngeal cancer, gastric cancer, hepatic cancer and cervical
cancer. They had decreased ratios for prostate cancer, breast cancer, Hodgkin disease and melanoma.

Swartz, Teresa., Lee, Jennifer C., and Jeylan T. Mortimer. (2003). “Achievements of First-Generation Hmong
Youth: Findings from the Youth Development Study.” CURA Reporter, University of Minnesota, Spring 2003, 15-
21. This article describes the findings of a cohort of Hmong students in the Saint Paul Public Schools first
surveyed in 1988 and interviewed in subsequent samples up to 2002. The authors discuss personal and family
characteristics, educational achievement, labor force participation, and trends in adolescent marriage and
childbearing among their longitudinal sample.

Lemoine, Jacques. (2002). “Hmong Identity: An Asset for Success in the West.” Speech Presented at the Hmong
National Conference, Milwaukee, WI, April 2002, 13 pages including references. Text of a presentation delivered
by Dr. Jacques Lemoine at the 7th Hmong National Conference. The speech discusses the traditional Hmong
social structure, social challenges in Hmong culture related to gender and marriage, the role of shamans and
herbalists in meeting social and health disorders, ancestral ways (Poj Yawj Kab Kev) and the role of Hmong
rituals of life and death in Hmong culture, Hmong transmission of oral traditions through music and prose, the
use of the word `Hmong’ in promoting the Hmong ethnic identity, and subgroups and divisions among Hmong
populations in East and Southeast Asia. The Resource Center would like to thank Dr. Jacques Lemoine of the
French National Center of Scientific Research and the Ethnographic Data Bank for Laos for donating a copy of
this document to the Hmong Resource Center

RECENT RESOURCE CENTER VISITORS:

115 persons used the Hmong Resource Center in June 2003. Recent visitors to the Resource Center have
included:

25 high school students in the summer school program of the Centennial (MN) school district. The students and
their teachers learned about Hmong history and culture as part of a social studies curriculum focusing on ethnic
groups in Minnesota.

Dr. Linda Gerdner, Professor of Nursing at the University of Minnesota, used the Resource Center to conduct a
literature review for her work related to the health of Hmong elders in Minnesota and Wisconsin.

David Zander, Research Analyst at the State of Minnesota Council on Asian Pacific Minnesotans, utilized the
Resource Center to find primary and secondary sources documenting incidents of racial discrimination against
Hmong in the Midwest over the past 2 decades.

Bee Lee and Caroline Cone of the Saint Paul School District visited to find materials to assist with the
development of a curriculum for teaching the Hmong language and culture in the Saint Paul public schools.

Takashi Oda, a visiting student studying at Tohoku University in Sendai, Japan used the Resource Center to
find materials for his project related to Hmong socioeconomic advancement in the United States.

Professor Donald Hones visited with about 20 students from his multicultural education class at the University of
Wisconsin-Oshkosh. The students were all residents of Northeastern Wisconsin who were studying to become
future teachers. Several of the students also used the Resource Center during their visit to the Twin Cities for
individual class research projects related to the Hmong people and their culture.

Educational orientation activity sessions related to Hmong-related resources and Hmong history and culture are
available for interested groups. To schedule a group visit, please call the Hmong Cultural Center at 651-917-
9937.

U.S. CENSUS CONTINUES TO RELEASE DETAILED HMONG SOCIOECONOMIC AND DEMOGRAPHIC DATA:

As noted in earlier editions of the newsletter, the U.S. census has begun releasing detailed socioeconomic,
demographic, and educational 2000 census data for Hmong and other Asian-Pacific Islander ethnic groups
(Summary File 4). This is the first time in more than 10 years that updated data on these variables has been
available for specific Asian-origin ethnic groups.

Variables in this release include Labor Force Status, Occupational and Industry Distribution, Median Household
Income, Median Family Income, Poverty Status, Educational Attainment and Income Distribution. Data
breakdowns for most of these variables are available by gender and may be tabulated by geographic area
(census tract, municipality, county, state, etc.)

Of particular interest to Hmong Studies scholars, the detailed Summary File 4 dataset has already been
released for Hmong and other ethnic groups in Wisconsin, California, Michigan, North Carolina, Colorado,
Oregon and Georgia as well as several states with smaller Hmong populations including Washington,
Massachusetts, Alaska, Texas, South Carolina, New York and Pennsylvania. The data may be accessed at www.
census.gov in the American Factfinder section. Those persons with questions about accessing this data may
contact Mark Pfeifer at the Hmong Resource Center.

CONTEMPORARY SOUTHEAST ASIA COURSE OFFERED AT UNIVERSITY OF MINNESOTA IN FALL 2003:

The class Understanding Southeast Asia: An Intercultural/Interdisciplinary Policy Perspective is now enrolling at
the University of Minnesota for the Fall 2003 semester. This course will help students develop an in-depth
understanding of contemporary Southeast Asia through a cultural and policy-oriented approach. Case studies
and critical incidents will be used to provide insight into the complexities and diversities of the region. The course
will cover both mainland and island Southeast Asia, including Brunei, Cambodia, East Timor, Indonesia, Laos,
Myanmar (Burma), the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam. There will be a special segment of the
course focusing on Hmong culture and society in Southeast Asia. The course is taught by Dr. Gerald W. Fry, a
member of the Hmong Cultural Center board of directors. For course information, contact Professor Fry at 612-
624-0294, e-mail: gwf@umn.edu

2003 HMONG RESOURCE CENTER TRAVEL GRANT PROGRAM CONTINUING TO ACCEPT APPLICATIONS:

With the dual goals of promoting scholarship in Hmong Studies and facilitating broader access to its unique
collections, the Hmong Resource Center will award travel grants to visit Saint Paul in the Fall Semester of 2003
to several Hmong Studies scholars for the purpose of conducting research using the Resource Center’s
extensive collections of Hmong-related books, PhD dissertations, MA Theses, academic and newspaper articles
as well as Hmong language literature related to Hmong culture and history. The Hmong Resource Center
collections include about 300 Hmong-related books and periodicals, 150 Hmong-related theses and
dissertations, about 500 Hmong-related academic journal articles, over 2000 Hmong-related newspaper articles
and around 100 videos.

The Hmong Resource Center Travel Grant program will award travel grants of $300 in August 2003 to two (2)
selected students/scholars who reside greater than 500 miles from Saint Paul, MN and travel grants of $150 to
two (2) selected students/scholars residing more than 100 miles from St. Paul in the Midwest region in such
states as Wisconsin, Michigan, Illinois, or Iowa.

Applicants must provide the following: a 250 word research statement about how access to the Hmong Resource
Center collection would be useful for their research, a letter of support from a professor at their university of
study/research as well as a curriculum vitae or resume. It is suggested that travel grant applicants visit the
Resource Center collection catalog on the Hmong Cultural Center website (www.hmongcenter.org) and provide
examples in their research proposal statements of specific books and materials in the collections that would be
useful for their research projects.

Applications should be mailed by July 31, 2003 to Mark E. Pfeifer, PhD, Director, Hmong Resource Center,
Hmong Cultural Center, 995 University Avenue, Suite 214 Saint Paul, MN 55104 for consideration. For further
information please call 651-917-9937 or e-mail hmongcultural@yahoo.com

YOUTH ARTS PROGRAMS UPDATE:

Students and parents involved in Hmong Cultural Center’s Qeej and Mentorship programs recently took part in
an educational program intended to help encourage positive and strong relationships between Hmong teens
and their parents. The program was conducted by Lao Lee of the Saint Paul Public Schools. The 3 session
program also included information about alcohol and drug awareness for Hmong parents and youth. These
workshops were made possible by mini-grants received from the Saint Paul-Ramsey County Department of
Public Health

Looking for some traditional Hmong culture to enliven your community event this Summer or Fall? The Hmong
Cultural Center’s Qeej (Traditional Hmong Music) and Traditional Dance troupes are available to perform for a
fee. Persons interested in scheduling performances may call Meng Vang (Qeej) or Yer Lo (Dance) at the
cultural center.

The Hmong Cultural Center’s Youth Arts Programs are supported by grants from the McKnight Foundation, the
Best Buy Children’s Foundation, the Grotto Foundation, the Metropolitan Regional Arts Council and the
COMPAS/Medtronic Community Arts Program. Operating grants from the Saint Paul Companies Inc. Foundation
and the General Mills Foundation also help to support the youth programs.

CITIZENSHIP PROGRAM UPDATE:

The Hmong Cultural Center’s Citizenship and Functional English Program is a member of the federally and state
funded Saint Paul Community Literacy Consortium (SPCLC). Hmong Cultural Center is pleased to announce that
its Executive Director, Txong Pao Lee, was recently elected to the Executive Committee of SPCLC.

The Hmong Cultural Center is currently accepting enrollment for its citizenship and functional English classes.
There are openings in the English language Citizenship classes offered Monday through Thursday from 10:00
AM to 12 Noon, the Hmong language Citizenship classes held Tuesday through Thursday 1:00-4:00 P.M. and
the English Language Citizenship Classes held Monday through Thursday from 4:30 to 6:30 P.M. For more
information call MayTong Chang at the cultural center (651-917-9937).

Need information about the citizenship process, study guides or application forms? Extensive citizenship-related
information is available on the Hmong Cultural Center website at www.hmongcenter.org/ The citizenship section
of the website includes examples of typical citizenship interview questions, as well as 100 sample citizenship
exam questions in both the English and Hmong languages. Up-to-date information is also provided about
eligibility and requirements pertaining to the Hmong Veterans’ Naturalization Act of 2000.

OUR SUPPORTERS:

Funding supporters of the Hmong Resource Center include the New York and Vermont-based Freeman
Foundation, the Bush Foundation, the 3M Foundation, the Pinewood Trust of the HRK Foundation, the
Minnesota Humanities Commission in partnership with the Minnesota State Legislature and the National
Endowment for the Humanities as well as the MAP for Nonprofit’s Technology Partnership Fund supported by
the Saint Paul Companies, Inc. Foundation and the ADC Foundation.