53 pages 1 hour read

Jessica Goudeau

After the Last Border:Two Families and the Story of Refuge in America

Nonfiction | Biography | Adult | Published in 2020

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Part 3, Chapters 22-26Chapter Summaries & Analyses

Part 3, Chapter 22 Summary: “Mu Naw: Austin, Texas, USA, August 2014, January 2015”

Although Saw Ku and Mu Naw had reconciled, their marriage remained unstable. Mu Naw accepted a job as a teacher’s assistant while Saw Doh was young, but the extra money did not provide lasting peace in the marriage. With Mu Naw’s mother calling to ask for money citing an illness, economic pressures remained.

Seeking a full-time job, Mu Naw successfully interviewed with a fair-trade jewelry company. Nervous on her first day, Mu Naw found her coworkers, especially Jennifer, kind and supportive. Five months later, she attended a conference with Jennifer and others featuring the stories of the fair-trade artists. Mu Naw saw her own story replicated in the video about a Guatemalan woman. The video made her realize that she was both an American woman and a Karen girl from Myanmar. Mu Naw loved her job and was good at it. She felt a new sense of power, that of “women who knew themselves, no matter where they were from” (222).

Part 3, Chapter 23 Summary: “US Refugee Resettlement, 1980-2006”

Across five presidential administrations from Ronald Reagan to Barack Obama, the refugee resettlement program remained a “vital program that ensured national security, provided economic stability, and fulfilled America’s humanitarian duties to the world” (224).