Identity lost: the affects of trauma and culture on Cambodian refugees
Targowski, John M.
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This project analyzes the affects of trauma and culture change on Cambodian refugees. The horrors Cambodians experienced at the hands of Pol Pot had a dramatic impact on the 150,000 refugees who immigrated to America in the late 1970s and early 1980s. Extreme culture shock added to the difficulty these refugees had in adapting to life in America. Traditional Cambodian culture is discussed, highlighting how Cambodians practiced religion, education, and gender roles before the war and how life afterward has changed them. Due to the vast differences between American and Cambodian beliefs and the delicate nature of the refugee state of mind, the Khmer have neither successfully continued life as they knew it in Cambodia nor fully adopted American culture.