Reference Work Entry

Encyclopedia of Sex and Gender

pp 452-464

Hmong of Laos and the United States

  • Dia Cha
  • , Timothy Dunnigan

Alternative Names

Alternative names are Hmoob, Mong, Moob, Miao, and Meo (derogatory).


In the 19th century, groups of Hmong engaged in large-scale migrations into Southeast Asia from the region of southern China, settling largely in the highlands of northeastern Laos. Thereafter, many Hmong fled Laos as the Pathet Lao assumed control of Laos in 1975. After living for a time in refugee camps in Thailand, these Hmong resettled in France, French Guiana, Australia, Canada, and the United States. This article focuses on the Hmong who immigrated to the United States from Laos after the Vietnam War, becoming Hmong Americans. These Hmong were born and/or raised either in the refugee camps of Thailand or in the United States.

Cultural Overview

Linguistic and Cultural Identifiers

Speakers of Hmoob Dawb or White Hmong call themselves Hmoob, whereas those who speak Moob Leeg (no English translation) refer to themselves as Moob. The presence versus the a ...

This is an excerpt from the content