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Ms. Mary M. Krautter

Professional Librarian, Research, Outreach, and Instruction, University Libraries

Ms. Mary M. Krautter

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

I have attended many workshops on cross-cultural communication and racism, and I have learned much. This book had an even more significant impact and changed my perceptions in a very profound way. In this nonfiction account, a deep love and commitment to the welfare of a child is shared by Hmong parents and American physicians, but misunderstandings and frustrations arise because of the cultural divide and lack of understanding and communication. This isn’t a simple story with heroes and villains, but a painful exploration of moral and cultural complexity. This powerful book is a reminder that life does not always have easy answers, but that we must attempt to bridge cultural gaps and deepen our understanding of others.