Immigration, Assimilation, Ethnicity and All That Jazz

New York Times article: Korean Kids Going to School Abroad with Mom, but not Dad

Posted by chinesecanuck on June 9, 2008

In the Education section of the New York Times today.

This isn’t anything new, IMHO.  Tons of Hong Kongers did this some fifteen to twenty years ago.  And the moms and kids who did this were not necessarily very, very wealthy families who sent their kids to private school.  Many were public school students.  There’s a Cantonese term for these people:  tai-hong yan (“astronauts”).  I don’t recall exactly WHY the term was coined or the meaning behind it, but perhaps it’s because the family’s separated and that Canada/or other English speaking country is “outer space” for them?  Perhaps because they’re so far away?  Like this case, it’s generally the mothers (especially stay-at-home moms) who come with the kids, rather than the fathers.  However, I didn’t see anything about passports/immigration in the South Korean story, which may very well be the ONLY DIFFERENCE.


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