What are three important scenes in this story?

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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The Khmer Rouge's occupation and evacuation Phnom Phenh on April 17, 1975 is an essential scene in the story.  It marks the end of Loung's age of innocence, a condition of her life where she is able to live as a young person.  It is a moment in which the killing fields of Cambodia becomes a realistic condition of being for her.  Another important scene would be the breakup of Loung's family.  Her father is abducted, her brothers are sent to labor camps, and her sister dies of disease.  This is an important scene because it represents the horrific nature of the Cambodian genocide on a personal level.

Finally, Loung's escape across the killing fields is an important scene in the narrative. It represents a moment in which there is some redemption in a tale where there is so much in way of condemnation.  For Loung, being able to escape what the Khmer Rouge was doing represents a solitary note of hope in a historical landscape where there is so much in way of sadness and hurt. These scenes help to bring out the importance of both Loung's narrative and the story of oppression that is a part of Cambodian history.

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