An important story about how a family loved and cared for their daughter, and how her life story came to teach us about the interface of culture and medicine…

UPDATE: As of 12:30pm Sept 2, there is no new news on Google regarding the condition of Lia Lee, but we received a comment from Jeff, “I am writing with sad news. Lia Lee, the daughter of Hmong immigrants whose life story inspired the The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down, died Friday, August 31st, 2012.”

We send our deepest condolences to the family of Lia Lee. Caring for a child with such need creates a powerful love, and I know she will be sadly missed.

This is a review originally published on Kmareka December 9, 2009, of ‘The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down’.

Anne Fadiman’s book is a powerful work of journalism, years in the making, that analyzes step by step the failures in communication and a clash of cultures that left a little girl in a chronic vegetative state– caught between life and death.


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