“the spirit catches you, and you fall down” final paper
While reading, be sure to take notes on the beliefs and values of Hmong culture as well as the prominent beliefs and values of American health care. In the title of her book, Anne Fadiman refers to a “collision of two cultures.” This metaphor aptly describes what happens when two very different cultures come together in trying circumstances. Such a “collision” allows the author to delineate clear cultural differences. In particular, it is possible to identify central beliefs and values of the Hmong culture as well as deeply ingrained beliefs related to health and healing in the United States.
Consider the relationships between religion, health and healing in the United States. Write an essay in which you discuss five essential aspects (beliefs and values) of Hmong culture. How do these beliefs and values manifest themselves in behaviors? How might the doctors have approached Lia’s treatment differently if they had understood the beliefs and values that stood behind these behaviors? How did the beliefs and behaviors of the medical staff impede their understanding of Lia’s circumstances?
You are welcome to pull from our course texts (Stein and Stein, Moro and Myers, or the online articles) in the development of your paper. There may be concepts discussed in one (or more) text that assist you in understanding the situation discussed by Fadiman. If you choose to draw from some of these other texts in building your paper, be sure to properly cite these sources. If you quote directly from another source, be sure to put quotation marks around the text and include the author’s name, the publication date, and the page number where the quotation can be found. If you quote directly from Fadiman, be sure to include the page number. If you paraphrase from another source, be sure to include the author’s name and publication date.