Social Exclusion and Church in the Experiences of Korean Migrant Families in Christchurch

Carolyn Morris, Richard Vokes, Suzana Chang


This article documents the experiences of new migrant families from South Korea to Christchurch, New Zealand. It is an empirically derived account of these experiences based upon research conducted in Christchurch between March and April 2006 which was funded by the Families Commission/Komihana a Whanau. In this paper we detail Korean Migrant accounts of social exclusion and harassment and explore how Koreans make sense of, and respond to, these experiences. What emerges is the central role of the church in providing a place of homeliness and security for many migrants. We argue that the 'Korean community' in Christchurch is as much the outcome of social exclusion, as it is of practices of community building by Koreans themselves.


Korean, migrants, community, New Zealand

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