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“What About the Next Generation That's Coming?”: The Recontextualization of Mothering Post–Refugee Resettlement

Hoffman, Sarah J. PhD, MPH, MSN, RN; Robertson, Cheryl L. PhD, MPH, RN, FAAN; Tierney, Jessica Dockter PhD

doi: 10.1097/ANS.0000000000000172
Family and Community Health

The purpose of this analysis was to explore the recontextualization of mothering in Karen refugees from Burma. We collected ethnographic data over an 11-month period with a cohort of 12 Karen women postresettlement. Using Spradley's and tools of critical discourse analysis, we interpreted the migration narratives of women, in particular, experiences they shared as mothers. These narratives were grounded in the space of cultural difference; thus, we engaged hybridity as a theoretical frame. Findings reflect the negotiation of mothering practices within the norms, structures, and policies of the country of resettlement. We identified the spaces of transformation a woman constructed to usher change while sustaining a connection between herself, her culture, and her children.

University of Minnesota School of Nursing, Minneapolis (Drs Hoffman and Robertson); and University of Minnesota College of Education and Human Development, Curriculum and Instruction, Minneapolis (Dr Tierney).

Correspondence: Sarah J. Hoffman, PhD, MPH, MSN, RN, University of Minnesota School of Nursing, 5-140 Weaver-Densford Hall, 308 Harvard St SE, Minneapolis, MN 55455 (

This work was supported through the University of Minnesota Graduate School Thesis Travel Award, the University of Minnesota Graduate School Interdisciplinary Doctoral Fellowship, and the Philanthropic Education Organization (P.E.O) Scholar Award. The authors acknowledge the support of the Karen Organization of Minnesota.

On behalf of all authors, we have no conflict of interests to report.

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