‘I am a Widow, Mother and Refugee:’ Narratives of Two Refugee Widows Resettled to Australia


Lenette, Caroline. 2014. "‘I am a Widow, Mother and Refugee’: Narratives of Two Refugee Widows Resettled to Australia." Journal of Refugee Studies 27 (3): 403-421.

Author: Caroline Lenette


The sparse literature on contemporary narratives of widowhood among refugee women as a consequence of conflict situations indicates that this aspect of lived experience is relatively unexplored. While loss is integral to the refugee journey, there is a paucity of analysis of how the sudden loss of a spouse under such circumstances can compound resettlement anxieties, particularly when women raise children alone. By exploring meanings attached to widowhood using examples from the experiences of two younger refugee women resettled in Brisbane, Australia, this article demonstrates how they negotiated lives characterized by community ostracism and stigmatization attached to widowhood and lone parenting. The limited knowledge specifically on young or middle-aged widowhood, the compounded impact on lone parenting, and intra-group tensions among refugee women are highlighted. Such an oversight should be addressed to provide a full understanding of complex wellbeing experiences for refugee widows with children resettled in western nations. [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]

Topics: Displacement & Migration, Refugees, Gender, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Households, Livelihoods, Post-Conflict Regions: Oceania Countries: Australia

Year: 2014

© 2023 CONSORTIUM ON GENDER, SECURITY & HUMAN RIGHTSLEGAL STATEMENT All photographs used on this site, and any materials posted on it, are the property of their respective owners, and are used by permission. Photographs: The images used on the site may not be downloaded, used, or reproduced in any way without the permission of the owner of the image. Materials: Visitors to the site are welcome to peruse the materials posted for their own research or for educational purposes. These materials, whether the property of the Consortium or of another, may only be reproduced with the permission of the owner of the material. This website contains copyrighted materials. The Consortium believes that any use of copyrighted material on this site is both permissive and in accordance with the Fair Use doctrine of 17 U.S.C. § 107. If, however, you believe that your intellectual property rights have been violated, please contact the Consortium at info@genderandsecurity.org.