Reconstructing Lives, Recapturing Meaning
Refugee Identity, Gender, and Culture Change
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Reconstructing Lives, Recapturing Meaning presents the first systematic investigation of refugees' loss of their old identities and their efforts to construct new ones. Edited by the Chair and Vice Chair of the Committee on Refugee Issues (CORI) of the American Anthropological Association, it critically examines the interplay between cultural, ethnic, and gender constructions among resettled refugee populations. Each chapter is grounded in anthropological theory and method, and the book's framework demonstrates the relationship between the dynamics of forced migration and the ways in which ethnic and gender identities are reinvented in new socio-cultural settings. Unanimous in their perception of boundary maintenance as central to identity formation, these essays allow readers to view refugee resettlement as a creative, experimental process.
"Reconstructing Lives, Recapturing Meaning prevents, often in a lively and readable manner, new accounts of refugee groups that have been little studied, new inquiries that extend knowledge about refugee experiences, and new analyses of long-standing refugee groups. Some of the chapters can be called brilliant, outstanding, clever, and full of ideas. All are solid contributions." -- Nancy Donnelly of University of Washington