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The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down, by Anne Fadiman
The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down: A Hmong Child, Her American Doctors, and the Collision of Two Cultures by
Call Number: 306.4 Fad
Publication Date: 2012-04-24
A study in the collision between Western medicine and the beliefs of a traditional culture focuses on a hospitalized child of Laotian immigrants, members of the Hmong tribe, whose belief that illness is a spiritual matter came into conflict with doctors' methods.
The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down explores the clash between a small county hospital in California and a refugee family from Laos over the care of Lia Lee, a Hmong child diagnosed with severe epilepsy. Lia's parents and her doctors both wanted what was best for Lia, but the lack of understanding between them led to tragedy. AVAILABLE: WSA Library and Kitsap Regional Library
Mountains Beyond Mountains, by Tracy Kidder
Mountains Beyond Mountains by
Call Number: B Far
Publication Date: 2004-08-31
At the center of Mountains Beyond Mountains stands Paul Farmer. Doctor, Harvard Professor, renowned infectious-disease specialist, anthropologist, the recipient of a MacArthur "genius" grant, world-class Robin Hood, Farmer was brought up in a bus and on a boat, and in medical school found his life's calling: to diagnose and cure infectious diseases and to bring the lifesaving tools of modern medicine to those who need them most. This book shows how radical change can be fostered in situations that seem insurmountable, and it also shows how a meaningful life can be created, as Farmer - brilliant, charismatic, charming, both a leader in international health and a doctor who finds time to make house calls in Boston and the mountains of Haiti - blasts through convention to get results. AVAILABLE: WSA Library and Kitsap Regional Library
The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, by Rebecca Skloot
The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by
Call Number: 616.02 Skl
Publication Date: 2011-03-08
Her name was Henrietta Lacks, but scientists know her as HeLa. She was a poor Southern tobacco farmer who worked the same land as her slave ancestors, yet her cells—taken without her knowledge—became one of the most important tools in medicine: The first “immortal” human cells grown in culture, which are still alive today, though she has been dead for more than sixty years. HeLa cells were vital for developing the polio vaccine; uncovered secrets of cancer, viruses, and the atom bomb’s effects; helped lead to important advances like in vitro fertilization, cloning, and gene mapping; and have been bought and sold by the billions.
Yet Henrietta Lacks remains virtually unknown, buried in an unmarked grave.
Henrietta’s family did not learn of her “immortality” until more than twenty years after her death, when scientists investigating HeLa began using her husband and children in research without informed consent. And though the cells had launched a multimillion-dollar industry that sells human biological materials, her family never saw any of the profits. As Rebecca Skloot so brilliantly shows, the story of the Lacks family—past and present—is inextricably connected to the dark history of experimentation on African Americans, the birth of bioethics, and the legal battles over whether we control the stuff we are made of. AVAILABLE: WSA Library, Kitsap Regional Library, and Port Townsend Library
A Door in the Earth, by Amy Waldman
A Door in the Earth by
Publication Date: 2019-08-27
Parveen Shams, a college senior in search of a calling, feels pulled between her charismatic and mercurial anthropology professor and the comfortable but predictable Afghan-American community in her Northern California hometown. When she discovers a bestselling book called Mother Afghanistan, a memoir by humanitarian Gideon Crane that has become a bible for American engagement in the country, she is inspired. Galvanized by Crane's experience, Parveen travels to a remote village in the land of her birth to join the work of his charitable foundation.
When she arrives, however, Crane's maternity clinic, while grandly equipped, is mostly unstaffed. The villagers do not exhibit the gratitude she expected to receive. And Crane's memoir appears to be littered with mistakes, or outright fabrications. As the reasons for Parveen's pilgrimage crumble beneath her, the U.S. military, also drawn by Crane's book, turns up to pave the solde road to the village, bringing the war in their wake. When a fatal ambush occurs, Parveen must decide whether her loyalties lie with the villagers or the soldiers -- and she must determine her own relationship to the truth. AVAILABLE: Kitsap Regional Library and Port Townsend Library