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The Universal Refugee Expierence

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Naomi Crispino

on 21 November 2014

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Transcript of The Universal Refugee Expierence

The Universal Refugee Experience
The novel
Inside Out & Back Again
by Thanhha Lai. The story tells of a young girl named Ha who must travel on a ship to escape the Vietnam War and find a new home in Alabama.

Ha's experience is also similar to a few refugees experiences in the article Children of War by Arthur Brice. This article tells of 4 refugees stories of escaping Bosnia. They are very similar but still have a few differences
Have you ever wondered if refugees had similar experiences? Well let me tell you, they sure do!
They both have had experiences losing loved ones from the war, and having to make friends in a new home.
Both Ha's and other refugees experiences are surprisingly similar to one another.
First of all, the Universal Refugee Experience turns ones life inside out because it is a journey to escape from danger, and will mostly likely face hardships that will make their life way more complicated then it already is. One example, is when a refugee loses a loved one then "everything [seems] so useless." (Brice 26). After the death of Amela's father it was not the same anymore. Amela had lost her father because of the war, and now she doesn't know what to do. Secondly, " [Ha] feels guilty, having not once thought of Father." (Lai 90). Ha's is escaping Saigon and realized she never once thought about her father. She feels guilty because she use to think about her father all the time and it was her wish to see him again, but ever since the war started she never thought about him once. Furthermore, Ha's family is also affected by the lost of their father (Lai 117) Ha's mother says not to think about him until they learn English, but she cannot forget about her mother. Ha and her family have to get used to Alabama but they cannot if their Father is still missing.
Furthermore, the Universal Refugee Experience is also related to the term "Back Again" because, they will mostly find a new home to settle down in. One example, is when many refugees feel like their lives are turned back again when they start feeling safe in their new environment. A refugee comparing her life after she has finally settled down in her new homes says, "I like it better than being a refugee in Croatia." (Brice 26). She is saying that she feels safer in the U.S rather then when she was in Bosnia. Amela doesn't get treated differently because she is different, she gets treated the same as any other person. Another example, that a Bosnian refugee said is "some people here don't know where Bosnia is, but they're really nice and try to help." (Brice 26). A few people did not know here Bosnia was, but they try to help the refugees any ways. It will help refugees if they have people to get them through this, and to supply them with items. A last example, is when "Pem comes over on gift - exchange day with a doll to replace the mouse - bittern one I told her about." (Lai 239). Ha's friend Pem gave her a gift for Christmas. Ha's mouse - bitten doll symbolized her old life now since her friend gave a new doll it symbolizes her new life.







One person I interviewed was Lorena M. Hewett . She considers herself as an immigrant because was born in the Philippines. Some experience that was challenging for her was adapting to American food, adapting to the hours because the U.S was 13 hours behind. She had to give up my two brothers when they were born ,went back to the Philippians, because she had to work and couldn't take care of them. She did felt like her life was turning back to normal.



A person I interviewed was my mom. She is an immigrant because, she was born in the Philippines but then moved to the U.S. A few experiences that was challenging for her was that she was the only one with a job. She also had to leave all her brothers and sisters behind, as well as her parents. A last challenge was that we did not have a lot of money and could not afford much. She did feel like her life was going back to normal when my dad got a job and when she finally got a good pay
Most refugees must travel to a new home to escape wars. It won't be easy in the slightest, but hopefully when they finally find a new home, they can get settled in with the help of their community
Full transcript