Follow the New Way: How American Refugee Policies Changed Hmong Religious Life

Event Date: 

Tuesday, April 25, 2023 - 5:00pm to 6:30pm

Event Location: 

  • Multicultural Center Lounge

Event Price: 

Free and open to the public

  • Martin E. Marty Lecture on Religion in American Life

In her new book, Follow the New Way: American Refugee Resettlement Policy and Hmong Religious Change (Harvard, 2023), Melissa May Borja provides an incisive look at Hmong religion in the United States. Borja shows how Hmong refugees from Laos found creative ways to maintain their religious traditions after resettlement, even as Christian organizations deputized by the government were granted an outsized influence on their new lives. In the creation of a new Christian-inflected Hmong American animism, we see the resilience of tradition amidst religious change.

Melissa Borja is Assistant Professor of American Culture at the University of Michigan, where she is core faculty in Asian/Pacific Islander American Studies. She is a historian of migration, religion, race, and politics. She advises Princeton’s Religion and Forced Migration Initiative and serves as lead investigator of the Virulent Hate Project.