The presentation about gender roles was pretty interesting. I think most Asians can relate to it. However, I felt that it was not enough information for me because the topic in my opinion was not gender roles. All I learned mostly was about the role of women and what they went through. Maybe it was because the presenters were all women but still, it would have been fairer to learn more about the male role in Southeast Asians.
The articles were interesting too. I did not know much about the lu mien people and I learned how they are much similar to Southeast Asians. They have gone through poverty, war, leaving home to have a better life and etc. I wonder why are they so rare? I agree with the class that the article was a little awful because of the limited study. The interviewer only interviewed lu mien women in their middle ages and discussed their roles. I also found interesting that the lu mien women had hosts and the ethnicity of the host had a huge impact on their adaptation to America. It made me imagine my mother and how her host was a white American family and told me stories of how she was a nanny and took care of the host’s family while learning English from television. Most of the women in the article lost their husbands too and told the interviewer how she had to survive and get stronger to raise her children and I think that is a common theme for most widows.
The visual was very impacting to me. I never really witnessed a lu mien family before and saw their traditions and beliefs and how family is so important to them. It made me feel a little sad that the girl has to struggle with a child, boyfriend being deported, and have motivation to go to school when her boyfriend does not really support her. I want to finish the video and see what happens to the family. I know from my hmong friends that they feel like they can totally relate to the lu mien family like big new year traditions and giving daughters to the husband’s family. The vast amount of siblings is also something in common with lu mien and Hmong families and I think that these people are greatly unrepresented in media. Most of the movies in theaters don’t even have hmong or lu mien actors and I think that’s very sad for our society to miss out on people with wonderful traditions and beliefs.
I guess for male roles, lu mien men are in control of the household and women has to live in their husband’s home. Men also do the jobs that are tough like hunting and farming which is typical in many cultures. They also go to war and input this feeling of paternalism onto the family where men just relax while women have to cook and clean. Males also have a high chance of getting into trouble with the law and join gangs and have a chance to get deported probably because most lu mien males do not focus on education but instead just learn how to work and provide for the family.
The presentation was okay in my opinion. It felt like a lecture about an article and didn’t get out of the box. It just regurgitated the information on the article so maybe for my presentation, I will try to expand my article and get others to think about the topic instead of just copying facts and just simplifying the article into simpler terms. I do have a want to learn more about the gender roles of southeast Asians from the presentation and maybe I’ll do my own research too.
-Tri-Thien Nguyen Lam