A phenomenological study on the North Korean refugees' trauma experience and recovery process during the escape and resettlement in South Korea

Hyosoon Kim, Youjin Kim, Jeonghwa Yoon, Jee Eun Karin Nam, Youngkeun Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

This qualitative study aimed to uncover the meaning of the trauma experiences and recovery process of North Korean refugees. Ten North Korean refugees were interviewed, and the data gathered was analyzed using Giorgi's descriptive phenomenological method. Results included 2 main categories, 4 subcategories, and 11 meaning units. Core themes were ‘trauma experiences during the escape’ and ‘trauma recovery process.’ Sub-themes were ‘life-or-death situations,’ ‘emotional and psychological distress during the escape,’ ‘enduring pain and progressing toward inner growth,’ ‘rebuilding a broken life through relational resources and support.’ Based on these findings, the implications of North Korean refugees’ trauma experience and recovery process are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Article number101742
JournalInternational Journal of Intercultural Relations
Volume92
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 2023

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 Elsevier Ltd

Keywords

  • Escape from North Korea
  • North Korean refugees
  • Phenomenological study
  • Recovery process
  • Trauma experiences

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