1. Describe Hang's upbringing.
Hang came from humble beginnings. Her mother raised her in a shack in Hanoi. Hang was affected by being a fatherless child.
2. How does Hang feel about the telegram?
She thinks the telegram feels like a curse since it came at a time when she was sick and had little money. However, she feels familial obligation to see her uncle.
3. What is the significance of the song Hang's roommate plays on the record player?
The song lyrics describe nostalgia and elicits a chill throughout Hang. The resonates with Hang and reminds her of her earlier life in Hanoi.
4. How did Hang's mother react to misfortune?
Hang's mother lived according to proverbs and duties. She believed that one should live with dignity and never give up. She thought that unhappiness makes a woman who is selfless and compassionate.
5. Describe Madame Vera's relationship with Hang.
Madame Vera is not only in charge of the dormitory, but cares for the girls living there. She is motherly and concerned about Hang's health for the journey. Before Hang leaves for Moscow, Madame Vera loans her a shawl.
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