Growing up Hmong at the Crossroads

23Nov2017 19:00 - 22:00


ASCA at DocuDoka #8: How Do Refugees Find their Identity? Film premiere and discussion with the filmmaker, Safoi Babana-Hampton, research collaborator and videographer Dan Dapkus, Ieme van der Poel, and Yolande Jansen. Organized by Patricia Llorens.

Growing up Hmong at the Crossroads gives a unique insight into the struggles that children of Hmong refugees from Laos often find themselves in. How do they relate to the cultural heritage and historical memory of their parents? How do they create a feeling of home and belonging to a certain place in a world where xenophobic perceptions grow stronger every day?

The film, which already won two awards at international film festivals, demonstrates the French colonial past and American military intervention in Vietnam still have a great impact on the younger generation's sense of place and belonging, and that, at present, the heated migration debate is shaped by these realities. The Hmong community seems to have found a place in its new country, but how have the children of these refugees succeeded to find their identity? How did their journeys look like and what price did they pay for it? And what does it teach us about the current debate on migration and refugees in the Netherlands?

Safoi Babana-Hampton is Associate Professor of French in the department of Romance and Classical Studies at Michigan State University. Her primary areas of teaching and research are 20th and 21st century French and Francophone literatures, film and cultural studies.  Her book Réflexions littéraires sur l’espace public marocain dans l’oeuvre d’Abdellatif Laâbi (Summa Publications, 2008) critically examines of the role of culture in the construction of civic consciousness and the formation of a modern public space in Morocco. She has also authored articles on a wide range of topics relating to conceptions of multicultural citizenship, the postcolonial condition, historical memory in a global context, interfaith relations and artistic hybridity in the literary and film productions of French cultural minorities, Moroccan Sephardic literature and other Francophone literary and filmic narratives from North Africa and Québec. She is a core faculty member of Global Studies, Muslim Studies, African Studies and an affiliate faculty of Jewish Studies. She is a former Fulbright fellow and a two time recipient and Senior Principal Investigator of the UIUC Humanities Without Walls award, funded by the Andrew Mellon Foundation, filling leadership roles as producer, executive producer, writer, videographer and director for the transnational collaborative documentary features Hmong Memory at the Crossroads (2015) and Growing up Hmong at the Crossroads.

After the screening there will be a discussion with the filmmaker, the research collaborator, and two experts in the field of identity and migration: Ieme van der Poel and Yolande Jansen. Van der Poel is Professor Emeritus at the University of Amsterdam, and is specialized in French postcolonial studies. Jansen is Associate Professor of Philosophy at the Amsterdam Centre for Globalization Studies, as well as researcher at the UvA and VU. Her field of work is social and political philosophy, multiculturalism, migration, Judaism, and Islam in Europa. The night will be led by Patricia Llorens of ASCA. Both the film and discussion will be in English.

Tickets for this 8th edition of DocuDoka are available online for €10 at €7.50 for students when showing their student ID at the door). If not already sold-out in pre-sale, tickets can be bought at the door as well. As seating is limited, advance ticketing is advised.

Programme DocuDoka #8: How Do Refugees Find their Identity? / Thursday, 23 November

19:00    Doors open

19:15       Brief introduction by Patricia Llorens

19:20       Screening of Growing up Hmong at the Crossroads (2017, 92 min)

20:50       Break

21:05       Post discussion with the filmmaker, cameraman, and the experts

22:00       End, possibility to chat at the bar, start Doka night (until 7:00 a.m.!)

DocuDoka is an initiative of creative night bar Doka in collaboration with the Department of Media Studies of the University of Amsterdam, cultural foundation Caribbean Creativity, and media and events agency Gasten in je Gezicht. It is an engaging film and discussion night on the adverse effects of globalisation. Every two months an urgent issue in today’s global society is discussed on the basis of a documentary and discussion with special guests and the audience.

Published by  ASCA