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May 27 , 2009

Educating New Americans

Immigrant Lives and Learning


Educating New Americans examines what it means to be an American through the history of a refugee from Laos. Shou Cha is a community liaison for an elementary school, an evangelical preacher, a community leader, a husband, and a father. His lifetime of learning, presented mainly in his own voice, is framed by various historical and sociological contexts that have shaped his life, the lives of other Hmong refugees, and the lives of other Americans, old and new. These contexts include the history of immigrant education policies in the United States, as seen through the lives of immigrant children; the historical and sociological impact of warfare as well as missionary work in the lives of the Hmong people; and the sociology of generational conflict, especially as it is felt among immigrant groups. Finally, this book suggests that immigrant parents such as Shou Cha can contribute to the process of teaching peace to children, and making peace between diverse groups in America, the land of e pluribus unum.

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