The Tibetans in the Diaspora: Cultural Maintenance Amidst Nationalism and Assimilation

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This paper is a portion of a larger study of Tibetan refugees within the USA. This large community (894) of Tibetan nationalists were granted asylum in the late 1970's, within the Madison, Wisconsin, USA setting. This study includes ethnographic research, of both lay and monastic Tibetans. The larger study spans the 6 major locations of Tibetan settlement throughout the USA (NY, NY; Chicago, IL; Minneapolis, MN; Bloomington, IN; San Francisco, CA; and Madison, WI), and is not completed yet. This preliminary research examines the struggle of Tibetan cultural maintenance outside a threatened and occupied motherland where issues of nationalism and assimilation are viewed as major concerns. Aspects of socio-cultural linguistic concerns are explored, as well as the daily traumatic affects of escape, refugee status, and separation of families.


Keywords: Tibetans, Lay and Monastic, Cultural Maintenance, Nationalism, Assimilation, Socio-Cultural Linguistic Preservation
Stream: Nations, Nationalism, Communities
Presentation Type: 30 minute Paper Presentation in English
Paper: A paper has not yet been submitted.


Prof. Katie M. Mangan

Clinical Associate Professor and Ph.D. Student, Helen Bader School of Social Welfare and Department of Anthropology, University of Wiconsin Milwaukee
Milwaukee, WI, USA

BA - Genetics - University of Wisconsin Milwaukee, 1983;
MSW - Social Work University of Wisconsin Milwaukee, 1986;
Post Graduate Fellow: The Family Therapy Training Institute, 1988;
Ph.D. Current, Socio-Cultural, Linguistic: Department of Anthropology, University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee, 2008;

Papers: (2001) Trinity College, Dublin, IRE: "Post-Traumatic Stress and Somatisation in Children.";
(2001) University of Edinburgh, Scotland: "Post-Traumatic Stress and Somatisation in Children."

Ref: D08P0370