The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down

  • Type: Books
  • By: Anne Fadiman
  • Age Category: Adults
  • Genre: Biography & Memoir
  • Recommended by: Mari G.
  • ISBN/UPC: 9780374533403
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An emergency room visit for a Hmong baby girl sets in motion endless misunderstandings that no one recovers from.

A cultural collision occurs between the Lee’s, a Hmong refugee family living in Merced, California and the doctors who treat their infant daughter. According to her doctors Lia has early signs of epilepsy, but her parents say she has “qaug dab peg”: the spirit catches you and you fall down and so her soul is wandering. Anne Fadiman is an award winning author who is like a cultural broker in describing the worldview clash between the US medical system and the Lee family.