Cultural models of democracy among Burmese residents in Chicago, Illinois, and Fort Wayne, Indiana
Hood, John Hillory
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This thesis examines implicit assumptions about democracy among Burmese residents in Chicago, Illinois and Fort Wayne, Indiana. A major focus of the research is the durability of foundational cultural models - basic, simple, widely-shared modes of thought - that may or may not change over time, measured in this study through length-of-residency. As such, I examined three distinct sample groups: temporary residents, immigrants, and adult offspring of immigrants. This research comprised methods of ethnography, semi-structured interviews, as well as a free-listing memory task. A key point of inquiry is intracultural variation occurring between sample groups. Particular attention was paid to heterogenous discourses from opinion communities, and the inner conflict that such discourses can generate within the mind.