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In the Shadow of the Banyan
A hauntingly powerful novel imbued with the devastation of monumental loss and...
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Why does Mama later change her advice and encourage Raami to forget her identity?

Created: 05/24/13

Replies: 12

Posted May. 24, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
davinamw

Join Date: 10/15/10

Posts: 447

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Why does Mama later change her advice and encourage Raami to forget her identity?

How does Raami struggle to maintain her identity as a daughter, a member of the royal family, and a Buddhist? Why does Mama later change her advice and encourage Raami to forget her identity?


Posted Jun. 04, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
rebeccar

Join Date: 03/13/12

Posts: 120

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RE: Why does Mama later change her advice and encourage Raami to forget her identity?

Mama is starting to feel defeated. Just like prisoners in concentration/death camps, there comes a point at which you are merely trying to stay alive.


Posted Jun. 04, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
Erin G

Join Date: 05/24/12

Posts: 41

RE: Why does Mama later change her advice and encourage Raami to forget her identity?

I think she realized their physical survival was in the hands of ignorant, cruel, petty people. They would have to risk losing their identities if they wanted to live through this--anything that made them stand out, including their dignity and their previous place in society, put them at risk. Raami's mother was swallowing her pride to help her daughter survive.


Posted Jun. 05, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
terri

Join Date: 04/11/12

Posts: 102

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RE: Why does Mama later change her advice and encourage Raami to forget her identity?

That is exactly the reason they had to "forget" who they were. Taking on a different identity was the key to their survival. So sad.


Posted Jun. 05, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
carolynv

Join Date: 04/17/11

Posts: 7

RE: Why does Mama later change her advice and encourage Raami to forget her identity?

I agree, it was necessary for survival.


Posted Jun. 06, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
terri

Join Date: 04/11/12

Posts: 102

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RE: Why does Mama later change her advice and encourage Raami to forget her identity?

Yes. They would have been treated much worse if it was known who they were. Control was the key to the "Organization."


Posted Jun. 06, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
alisonf

Join Date: 01/31/13

Posts: 35

RE: Why does Mama later change her advice and encourage Raami to forget her identity?

To ignore one's identity was something that went against everything this family was but survival meant being part of the masses, nothing to stand out, nothing that would prevent food or draw attention to yourself. It became an act that they had to play. Also, by dwelling on who they were and where they came from would have made their current circumstances even more unbearable by comparison. During this time, they had to forget.


Posted Jun. 06, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
elise

Join Date: 04/22/11

Posts: 6

RE: Why does Mama later change her advice and encourage Raami to forget her identity?

Yes I agree. Most of the people that were in leadership roles had a strong hatred/jelousy against anybody that previously had any status or wealth. Their survival demanded that they blend in.


Posted Jun. 06, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
paml

Join Date: 10/25/12

Posts: 27

RE: Why does Mama later change her advice and encourage Raami to forget her identity?

Raami's family is from royalty. To be an unknown during the reign of the Khmer Rouge was your only chance of survival. Mama was not from royalty, she married into it. She understood what it meant to blend in and survive. I felt that Mama's character became almost heroic the worse the situation became. Mama possessed skills from her childhood that she used and taught Raami that kept them alive.


Posted Jun. 09, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
kathleenr

Join Date: 12/07/12

Posts: 68

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RE: Why does Mama later change her advice and encourage Raami to forget her identity?

I thought Raamis mother wanted her to be proud of herself and her family so that the Khmer Rouge could not beat her down. However, the Khmer Rouge wanted to rid the country of those they perceived as privileged. It became apparent that as a child Raami could not be trusted not to give herself away. To save her, Mama instructs her to forget. It also would protect her from shame or embarrassment for what she is forced to do to survive not to see herself as too good for anything, such as eating bugs.


Posted Jun. 13, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
terri

Join Date: 04/11/12

Posts: 102

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RE: Why does Mama later change her advice and encourage Raami to forget her identity?

I agree with everyone. In order not to bring attention to yourself or allow others to think you are better than anyone else, one needs to forget who they are and be one and the same as everyone else


Posted Jun. 14, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
lesleym

Join Date: 05/12/11

Posts: 26

RE: Why does Mama later change her advice and encourage Raami to forget her identity?

Mama was thinking of Raami's survival when she told her to forget her past life. The more she held onto her past life and possibly showed the soldiers this part of herself, the greater chance she have of dying.


Posted Jun. 21, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
sallyg

Join Date: 05/14/11

Posts: 19

RE: Why does Mama later change her advice and encourage Raami to forget her identity?

When the Organization came through and she passed for a peasant, Mama lost hope. At the same time ,She was trying to protect her Raami not giving herself away . Mama had lost her home, her husband and her way of life with the power of the Khmer Rouge.


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