First They Killed My Father

Eang Character Analysis

Meng’s wife, who was away at school during the purge of Phnom Penh. After she and Meng marry in Bat Deng, Eang learns that most of her family escaped to Vietnam and are alive and well. She and Meng then smuggle Loung to a Thai refugee camp. Eang is kind and motherly to Loung. Upon learning that they will be moving to America, for example, she takes Loung to buy fabric for a new dress in celebration. The dress has red in its pattern, helping Loung fulfill her dream of replacing the red dress the Khmer Rouge destroyed. In Vermont, Eang works with Meng at IBM.

Eang Quotes in First They Killed My Father

The First They Killed My Father quotes below are all either spoken by Eang or refer to Eang. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
The Price of Survival  Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Harper Perennial edition of First They Killed My Father published in 2001.
Chapter 27 Quotes

Then I lift and smooth my dress once again before laying it down carefully, making sure it will not be wrinkled tomorrow. I am sad thinking I have finally replaced the other red dress that the soldier burned. This is my first dress in five years, and tomorrow I will wear it and show off to everyone. Before the giggles can escape my lips, a feeling of sadness pushes them down. Staring at the dress I realize it will never be the dress Ma made for me. They are both gone.

Related Characters: Loung Ung (speaker), Ma , Eang
Related Symbols: Loung’s Red Dress
Page Number: 232
Explanation and Analysis:
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Eang Character Timeline in First They Killed My Father

The timeline below shows where the character Eang appears in First They Killed My Father. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 25: Back to Bat Deng, April 1979
The Price of Survival  Theme Icon
The Unbreakable Bonds of Family Theme Icon
An uncle arranges for Meng to marry Eang, a Chinese girl in her twenties who was away at school during the purge of... (full context)
The Price of Survival  Theme Icon
The Unbreakable Bonds of Family Theme Icon
After three months in Bat Deng, Eang’s sister arrives at the village and says that most of her family escaped to Vietnam... (full context)
Chapter 26: From Cambodia to Vietnam, October 1979
The Price of Survival  Theme Icon
The Unbreakable Bonds of Family Theme Icon
...once did in Phnom Penh. For two months they live in a one-bedroom apartment with Eang’s parents, who speak Vietnamese and are kind to Meng and Loung. Eang takes Loung to... (full context)
Genocide, Racism, and Propaganda Theme Icon
The Unbreakable Bonds of Family Theme Icon
...it is considered derogatory. Both begin to gain weight. In December they move in with Eang’s sisters, who live in floating houseboats on the Mekong. Loung is jealous and thinks of... (full context)
The Price of Survival  Theme Icon
The Unbreakable Bonds of Family Theme Icon
...and fish. Before letting the passengers return, everyone must line up and give them something. Eang gives Loung Pa’s jade Buddha pendant so she will have something to give them. The... (full context)
Chapter 27: Lam Sing Refugee Camp, February 1980
The Price of Survival  Theme Icon
The Unbreakable Bonds of Family Theme Icon
Using the gold hidden in their clothes, Meng, Eang, and Eang’s sister, whom they meet at the camp, are able to buy a hut... (full context)
The Price of Survival  Theme Icon
The Unbreakable Bonds of Family Theme Icon
...finally going to America the next week. No longer needing to save so much money. Eang takes Loung to a Thai cloth market to buy fabric to make her a new... (full context)
The Price of Survival  Theme Icon
The Unbreakable Bonds of Family Theme Icon
...and that he will find her wherever she goes. The next morning Loung, Meng, and Eang go to the Bangkok airport. Thinking of Pa, Loung boards the airplane for America. (full context)
Epilogue
The Price of Survival  Theme Icon
Genocide, Racism, and Propaganda Theme Icon
The Unbreakable Bonds of Family Theme Icon
Meng and Eang live in Vermont with their two daughters. Both obtained jobs at IBM despite having little... (full context)