The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down: A Hmong Child, Her American Doctors, and the Collision of Two Cultures The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down discussion


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Sharon http://www.nytimes.com/2012/09/15/us/...

Lia has died. NYT has an article about her and about the book.


Cynthia I read this book when it first came out- it is heartbreaking but beautifully written. I recommend it often.


Mmars Her parents' love and care for her for all those years is a testament to Hmong family loyalty.

Amazing story. Great book. A must read.


message 4: by Eva (new) - rated it 5 stars

Eva One of my favorite books. Fadiman captured the Hmong family devotion, the blind spots of well-meaning doctors, and the rigid narrowness of western medical institutions.


message 5: by Katie (last edited Sep 27, 2013 02:42AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Katie I realize that I'm a year late to the conversation, but I'm curious if any of you were a little disturbed that Lia lived so long? It sounds like a terrible existence. I can only hope that she was unaware of her circumstances, as the doctors presumed, but the frequent crying really bothers me. I'm not accusing the parents of any wrong doing. I could never fault them for NOT neglecting her to death, but if I were her, I would rather have died. My family has not had to deal with anything similar, and I KNOW it's easier said than done, but we have all said at one time or another "Please let me die if ____. I wouldn't want to live like that!" I know that type of thinking probably doesn't exist in their culture, but I worry that the girl suffered horribly. Crying every day for almost 30 years? Possibly having no idea why ... it seems so terrible. As I read, I became anxious to get to the death scene, and disappointed that it did not come.


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