Lynch, A. 1995. “Hmong American New Year’s Dress: The Display of Ethnicity.”

Lynch, Annette. 1995. “Hmong American New Year’s Dress: The Display of Ethnicity.” Pp. 255-268 in Dress and Ethnicity: Change Across Space and Time, edited by Joanne B. Eicher. Washington D.C.: Berg.

Sarna (1978): though immigrant groups self-identify on a variety of levels (family name, region of origin within country of departure, hometown, etc.), frequently American systems of ethnic classification homogenizes these differences – making immigrant groups susceptible to “nativizing” institutions and power structures (kx^ which may serve to disadvantage them?) – “[…] ethnic groups use cultural content to construct symbols of cohesiveness and pride as a defensive response to discrimination based upon ethnic identity. In this way fragmented clusters of immigrants become cohesive ethnic groups by accepting and eventually symbolizing externally drawn ethnic boundary lines.  Cultural content, which is often an eclectic mix of cultural elements drawn from throughout the ethnic group membership, is used both to accommodate and resist dominant American power structures” (here 257, see also Sarna 1978).

Public celebrations (such as the described Hmong New Year) offers outlets to display suppressed and homogenized ethnic identities boldly – yet, these are performed in response/respect to (generational) adaptation to the host country (or, possibly to signify resistance – kx^ here, it is mentioned to American hegemonies/ethnic stereotypes – but, could modified ethnic dress act as a point of resistance to ethically-based sociocultural codes/ideals/expectations WITHIN communities?)

CITES:

Sarna, J. 1978. “From Immigrants to Ethnics: To a New Theory of ‘Ethnicization.’ Ethnicity 5: 370-378.

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