The Latehomecomer By Kao Kalia Yang Essay

The Latehomecomer By Kao Kalia Yang Essay

Length: 1010 words (2.9 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Better Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview


The Latehomecomer
In The Latehomecomer, by Kao Kalia Yang shares her story and the story of her family’s search for a home and identity. Her family’s story voices the story of the Hmong people and their plight. From every stage of their journey, from the mountainous jungles of Southeast Asia to the freezing winter of Minnesota, Yang and the Hmong were compelled to redefine their identity, willingly or unwillingly. While growing up, Yang’s parents would often ask her, “’What are you?’ and the right answer was always, ‘I am Hmong.’” (Yang, 1) For “Hmong” to be the right answer, then what does it mean to be “Hmong”? From the personal story shared by Yang, and the universal story of the Hmong people, the Hmong identity cannot be contained in one jungle, camp, language, or narrative. The Hmong identity is in continuous metamorphosis that only be told by the Hmong.

The Hmong were originally from China, and later migrated down to the jungles of Southeast Asia. They have dwelled in the mountainous jungles of Laos and Vietnam ever since. They are people without a country or any written history. Due to their lack of a written language and country, the Hmong have been either forgotten in the history books, or been told by others. With this reality, the Hmong have been voiceless to tell their own story.

During the Vietnam War, the Hmong people fought alongside the United States.
When the US decided to withdraw its forces from the war, the Hmong were left to fend for themselves. For helping the US, the Hmong would once again be on the run to avoid persecution and death from Pathet Lao and the North Vietnamese soldiers. Yang’s family and thousands of other Hmong fled to the jungles and sought refuge elsewhere.

In their desperate search...


... middle of paper ...


...whole lives through.” (Yang, 263) Throughout this story, her grandmother was the bond that held the whole family together through all the ordeals. She was the source of pride of being a Hmong, and the courage to find her voice.

For a very long time the Hmong people have been searching for a place to call home. Their journey has forced them to face many sorrowful circumstances, and forced them to change in many ways. Over the course of their plight, Hmong have taken many identities. They have been refugees, immigrants, survivors, patriots, and Americans. Even after finding a home in the US, the Hmong identity cannot be determined. The Hmong identity cannot be contained in the jungles of southeast Asia, Thai refugee camps, languages, or a memoir. The Hmong identity is in continuous metamorphosis, and the only people who can voice about their identity are the Hmong.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Love Will Keep Us Together: Kao Kalia Young Essays

- “She had never said it was love. Neither had he. They were shy. They had been unsure. Now, there would be no time for love. It was in the moment of parting that she knew she loved him” (Yang 21). Love exists as an emotion that persists to be challenging to comprehend, but once one feels it, it seems problematic to let go of it. Kao Kalia Yang wrote the book The Latehomecomer: A Hmong Family Memoir, which tells of the anguish the Hmong people faced in their excursion from Laos to the United States....   [tags: latehomecomer, hmong culture, kao young]

Better Essays
1035 words (3 pages)

Conformity In Arlie Russell's Stranger In Their Own Land Essay

- Conformity: compliance with standards, rules, or laws. This theme was clearly presented in the book Stranger in Their Own Land by Arlie Russell. This book is about the sociologist Arlie Russell’s journey, or experience visiting the “red states” of America to try and find out the point of view of conservatives, as she herself was liberal. She takes on this experience to learn more on our countries divided political views and see what we could agree on, or at least compromise on. In this book, I believe conformity is a big theme because many of the people Russell interviewed may have considered themselves patriotic and nationalistic....   [tags: Liberalism, Nationalism, Liberal, Patriotism]

Better Essays
756 words (2.2 pages)

Essay on P'tang Yang Kipperbang by Jack Rosenthal

- "P'tang Yang Kipperbang" by Jack Rosenthal Works Cited Not Included Alan is a 14 year old adolescent. He is a typical teenager, exceedingly self-conscious, has strong sexual interests and desires and thinks he is ugly and fat, so starves himself. Alan is the ultimate anti-hero. A traditional hero is loved and envied by all, is good at what he does, very popular, superhuman in terms of status and good looks, who saves and helps the needy, a person who people look up to. Furthermore, Alan is ugly, forgotten by all, a no-one, the most ostracized person in the school....   [tags: P'tang Yang Kipperbang Rosenthal Essays]

Better Essays
2263 words (6.5 pages)

Kao Ly ' Minor For Dental Hygiene Essay

- Kao Ly Moua is a graduate at University of Utah major in Nursing and minor in Dental Hygiene. Kao Ly’s minor in Dental Hygiene is still in progress and she is working on her associate 's degree. Kao Ly grew up in a small town called Fillmore, Utah with a population of 2,492 people. Kao Ly has many talents and to care about others was her main passion to help those in needs. Kao Ly is a now a RN at LDS Hospital located in Salt Lake City, Utah and hope to have people admire her work in the nursing field for future nurses....   [tags: Nurse, Nursing, Nurses, Gautama Buddha]

Better Essays
827 words (2.4 pages)

The Chinese Concept Of Yin And Yang Essay

- There is the assertion that diversity is a positive factor that results in an economic competitive advantage for businesses. The Chinese concept of Yin and Yang illustrates that diversity and inclusion and innovation are intrinsically interconnected. Strategies for business growth, expansion into new markets and mergers and acquisitions could be enhanced by diversity and inclusion. As Katherine Phillips reports in Scientific American, “Diversity can improve the bottom line of companies and lead to unfettered discoveries and breakthrough innovations.” Organizations that cultivate an inclusive environment, making the most of diversity can generate innovations helping them outperform the compet...   [tags: Affirmative action, Discrimination]

Better Essays
1053 words (3 pages)

The Yin and Yang of Identity Essay

- According to Chinese philosophy, yin and yang is a philosophy that describes two seemingly opposing forces working together to create a perfect complimentary harmony. This concept creates a tension throughout Ruth Ozeki’s documentary, Halving the Bones. Ozeki, for lack of one, forges an identity for herself, uniting her contrasting backgrounds – specifically, her half-Japanese and half-American backgrounds - with the help of her documentary, Halving the Bones. Her disillusionment begins with her very own name and traces through her relatives’ lives, finally ending with her acceptance of the two opposing heritages....   [tags: Film Analysis ]

Better Essays
1736 words (5 pages)

The Principles of the Yin and Yang Essay

- The Principles of the Yin and Yang The principle of the yin and yang is embedded in all facets of my life. But its operations have taken the subtlest of forms, unfolding through a kind of shy conspiracy, an inner dynamism in the nature of things. Such qualities are inherent in the way Chinese traditions view things, as the web that has no weaver, an intricate and interlaced patterns of relationships of all that there is without a known creator and creation day. It is far different from a historical timeline or a linear logic....   [tags: Papers]

Better Essays
655 words (1.9 pages)

Yin and Yang in "Sula" Essay

- "Sula" Yin and Yang is an ancient Chinese philosophy that says everything in the world works through opposing energies and that everything has its counter part which balances the world out. This idea of counter parts also carries into literature as shown in the book Sula by Toni Morrison. According to social conventions the character Nel is the yang (positive character/good) and Sula is the yin (negative character/evil). This is the way both characters are viewed on sole terms of how they conform to society....   [tags: American Literature]

Better Essays
848 words (2.4 pages)

Essay on The Yin Yang School

- The Yin Yang School There is a tree that I know. It is a tall tree, and has been in existence for many years. The tree was there before the building that stands next to it. When the building was built, the tree was left standing and has adapted itself around the intrusion of the building. When I look at it though, I see more than most people do. I have spent many years with this tree and know every knot on it, and every branch that it has. When I sit back and look at it from a distance, there is a perfect line that can be drawn up the trunk of the tree, and when that line is discovered, there is a perfect balance in the tree....   [tags: Papers]

Better Essays
1759 words (5 pages)

Yin-Yang Essay

- ‘I’ am an in-between-er. ‘I’ is first person. ‘I’ is personal. An in-between-er exchanges two contrasting principles and exists in two contrasting aspects. As I have lived equally amount of time in China and Australia, I fond myself questioning the means of ‘being’ which the Chinese 5,000 year heritage I brought with me constantly contradicting my Australian twenty-first century living. Regardless, I live mutually dependent on my Chinese tradition and modern western civilisations. I will not exist without either cultural element....   [tags: Philosophy]

Better Essays
1833 words (5.2 pages)