The Sprit Catches You and You Fall Down

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Counseling The Culturally Diverse


By: Yvette Bradley

Professor: Dr. K. Doka

The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down by: Anne Fadiman

In the book The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down starts with the traditional nurturing of the Hmong people. The most significant tradition is the burying of the placenta. The Hmong people believe that the placenta must be purposefully buried in a particular spot under the dwelling of the Hmong’s between the dirt floors when the person dies their soul travels back to where the placenta is buried.

The Hmong’s are perceived by some as unclean and barbaric. They appear to me to be very proud people, and people of great faith. They had different views and depended on the natural resources of the earth for their therapeutic healing, and to worship their GODS as they understood it to be. They did not want live in a modern civilization as we do here in America. Even during the time when this story took place….There is old sayings that how can you go back to something if you know nothing about it. They believe in their gods or higher power as we believe in ours. This again begins the diversity of how cultures exist in this day and age. What may appear as bizarre to another it’s a key principal to their kingdom which they believe that they will eventually end up in.

Throughout the story of The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down, by Anne Fadiman is the struggle between what is best for the daughter Lia Lee who has been hospitalized from multiple seizures living in America. She is the first of her family born in a hospital and the rules are completely different in their Country Laos. There practices are not conducive in America.

You can not bring your child in to a hospital setting, and receive instruction to give your child to keep them alive and you don’t follow through with the request of the doctors in charge of your Childs care. Once you...
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