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The Latehomecomer Sparknotes Chapter
The Latehomecomer Prologue Summary & Analysis Prologue Summary: “Seeking Refuge” From 1980-1987, Kao Kalia Yang chronicles her evolving identity as a Hmong person living in Thailand, a land that is hostile to the displaced Hmong people. The Latehomecomer: Chapter 9. LitCharts assigns a color and icon to each theme in The Latehomecomer, which you can use to track the themes throughout the work. Kao is nine years old, and she’s thrilled because the family has finally saved enough money for Youa to visit them in Minnesota.
The Latehomecomer Questions
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…show more content…
In their pursuit of assimilating and calling the US home, they had forged a new identity of Hmong Americans. (Yang, 203) Being Hmong American meant striving to move up the economic ladder and determining one’s own future. They understood that for them to realize their American dream and their “possibilities”, it could only be done so through “school”. (Yang, 139) Yang realized her dream by attaining a Master’s of Fine Arts from Columbia University and publishing books about the Hmong story.
For Kao Kalia Yang to share her story and the story of her family in The Latehomecomer, not only did it empower her to fulfill her family’s wish, but it also gave a voice for the Hmong. For once in their history, Yang and the Hmong were able to determine their future. They could have easily been forgotten by history, but they chose to survive to tell their story.
At the end of The Latehomecomer, Yang concludes with the promise she had made to her grandmother: “I told her we will not become the birds or the bees. We will become Hmong, and we will build a strong home that we will never leave and can always return to. We will not be lost and looking our 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…show more content…
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