This paper deals with the life world and ethnic identity of Vietnamese residents who entered and settled in Australia and Japan as refugees after the end of the Vietnam War. It focuses on how social and cultural conditions in the host countries and global influences affect the lives of overseas Vietnamese and consequently transform their ethnic identities. Through this comparative research study conducted in Australia and Japan, I have focussed on Vietnamese religion, social networks, perceptions of the homeland and the host country, notions of Vietnamese identity between generations, and images of Vietnamese in the media of the host country. I explore the features of each host society in accepting refugees and also the commonalities and differences in how the overseas Vietnamese construct their life world and ethnic identity. I also discuss the “location of Vietnamese identities” in Australia and Japan. I will also rethink the meaning of “settlement” and “crossing borders” related to the politics of Vietnamese identities that confirm the importance of investigating the effects of displacement on the life of the Vietnamese diaspora in contemporary world context.
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