This overdue edition of the Mayka Mei Media Report brought to you by Super Delay! That no-excuse brand of lagging.
The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down by Anne Fadiman
An absolutely amazing book written by investigative journalist Anne Fadiman. Following the intercultural communication issues between Merced County doctors and a refugee Hmong family, it goes into incredible detail not just in medical records and official reports, but also in Hmong traditions and folklore. With all the sentiments it stirs up on both sides of the ongoing relationship, it’s no wonder why The Spirit has earned so much acclaim and been given a spot on so many book lists. To not “get” this book is to admit your absolute lack of awareness. (Look, Lotta, I read it!)
White Snake by Geling Yan
I’m biased because this is a book published by the publishing house where I’m interning, but it really is a fantastic collection of stories. Written by Geling Yan and translated into American English by her husband, it’s a very tender read dealing with very adult, complex issues. If you’re the type who cannot comprehend 80s China with gender ambiguity or desperate Intellectual Youth resorting to prostitution, read this book. Or not. I know your world is more stable if you don’t.
Loved it. I don’t think I’ve felt that much audience solidarity since Wall-E. Everyone was cheering for Jamal. The little boy is adorable, the girl is gorgeous, and they dance at the end! The hero’s journey is an enjoyable ride.
Some groups have taken issue with the film, saying it takes advantage of Mumbai’s poverty – as guilty as Black minstrel shows. (“Poverty porn,” they call it.) Such a judgment is very subjective, and though I consider myself very concerned with injustice in media portrayals, I can’t say I picked up on that when I saw SM.
(Mild spoiler: I almost had a heart attack at the end because I thought the third musketeer’s name was D’Artagnan.)
GAG. That was so overdone I teared up out of confusion. Mama Tai-Chi, Twin, and I made the mistake of catching this movie in the midst of the Donate Life New Year. All the organ donation was just too saturated in repentance and Will Smith’s pained “I’m constipated or have diarrhea, but I can’t tell you which.” face.