Title

Paradise Lost: Older Cuban American Exiles’ Ambiguous Loss of Leaving the Homeland

Document Type

Article

Keywords

qualitative methods, ethnicity and multicultural issues, ambiguous loss, Cuban Americans, transcendental phenomenology, aging

Disciplines

Psychology | Social and Behavioral Sciences | Social Work

Abstract

To explore the experience of leaving Cuba, 2 Cuban American émigrés interviewed 20 Cuban exiles aged 65 or older, who left Cuba between 1959 and 1971. The interviews were conducted in New York and New Jersey using a phenomenological approach (Moustakas, 1994). Themes included feeling betrayed by the Revolution, the inevitability of leaving, the expectation of a temporary refuge, and longing and idealizing the past. The psychological presence that participants expressed, along with an endless sense of loss, resonates with ambiguous loss theory (Boss, 2006)—themes that have yet to be explored in the literature and that have research and practice

Article Number

1007

Publication Date

2013

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