The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down - Chapter 1 Summary & Analysis

Anne Fadiman
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Chapter 1 Summary and Analysis

In Hmong tradition, Foua Lee delivered her first twelve children in a squatting position on the floor of her own home, which had been built by her husband with native materials. Her births were quiet, uncomplicated, and private (private meaning not attended by a care provider, but she was not alone—she was usually surrounded by her other sleeping children). The Lee family were fortunate to have healthy children, but in the event of an illness the Hmong tribe utilized the powers of a txiv neeb. A txiv neeb was a shaman believed to fly long distances on a winged horse in a trance-like state. He would travel to locate lost souls and retrieve them on behalf of family members. Souls were believed to be detained by a spirit called a dab, and dabs were lurking everywhere, awaiting opportunities to...

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This section contains 556 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down Study Guide
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