fadiman do doctors eat brains

fadiman do doctors eat brains - Relating Fadiman...

Info iconThis preview shows pages 1–2. Sign up to view the full content.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Relating Fadiman Introduction Anne Fadiman is an author, essayist, and editor. She has won National Magazine Awards for both reporting and her essays. For seven years she edited The American Scholar. In 2005 she began as the first Francis Writer in Residence at Yale. She is the author of Libris: Confessions of a Common Reader and The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down: A Hmong Child, Her American Doctors, and the Collision of Two Cultures, which won the National Book Critics Circle Award for nonfiction, as well as other awards. Do Doctors Eat Brains? In 1982, Mao Thao, a Hmong woman from Laos who had resettled in St. Paul, Minnesota, visited Ban Vinai, the refugee camp in Thailand where she had lived for a year after her escape from Laos in 1975. She was the first Hmong-American ever to return there, and when an officer of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, which administered the camp, asked her to speak about life in the United States, 15,000 Hmong, more than a third of the population of Ban Vinai, assembled in a soccer field and questioned her for nearly four hours. Some of the questions they asked her were: Is it forbidden to use a txiv neeb to heal an illness in the United States? Why do American doctors take so much blood from their patients? After you die, why do American doctors try to open up your head and take out your brains? Do American doctors eat the livers, kidneys, and brains of Hmong patients? When Hmong people died in the United States, is it true that they are cut into pieces and put in tin cans and sold as food? The general drift of these questions suggests that the accounts of the American health care system that had filtered back to Asia were not exactly enthusiastic. The limited contact the Hmong had already had with Western medicine in the camp hospitals and clinics had done little to instill confidence, especially when compared to the experiences with shamanistic healing to which they were accustomed. A txiv neeb might spend as much as eight hours in a sick person's home; doctors forced their patients, no matter how weak they were, to come to the hospital, and then might spend only 20 minutes at their bedside. Txiv neebs were polite and never needed to ask questions; doctors asked many rude and intimate questions about patients’ lives, right down to their sexual and excretory habits. Txiv neebs could render an immediate diagnosis; doctors often demanded samples of blood (or even urine or feces, which they liked to keep in little bottles), took X-rays, and waited for days for the results to come back from the laboratory—and then, after all that, sometimes they were unable to identify the cause of the problem. Txiv neebs never undressed their patients; doctors asked patients to take off all their clothes, and sometimes dared to put their fingers inside women's vaginas. Txiv neebs knew Fadiman, Anne. "Do Doctors Eat Brains?" in The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down, pp. 32-37. Farrar, Straus, and Giroux, 1997.
Background image of page 1

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full DocumentRight Arrow Icon
Image of page 2
This is the end of the preview. Sign up to access the rest of the document.

This note was uploaded on 07/17/2011 for the course ETHIC 2050 taught by Professor Johncrawford during the Spring '11 term at Utah Valley University.

Page1 / 4

fadiman do doctors eat brains - Relating Fadiman...

This preview shows document pages 1 - 2. Sign up to view the full document.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Ask a homework question - tutors are online