The Perfect Body


In this essay, Larissa Pham gives her readers a clear look into the nitty gritty details of her childhood.

In Southeast Asia, as in ballet, femininity is quiet, graceful, small, and strong. There are certain conventions: my Vietnamese mother kept my hair short until it grew thick enough to be deemed beautiful when past my shoulders; even now, at the age of twenty, I keep it long enough for strangers to take notice. To be small and light is good. I grow up learning that as fact. Unquestioned.

If you enjoy that essay, take a look at another of Pham’s essays here at the Rumpus.

Casey Dayan is a Rumpus intern and musician. He is finishing up his undergraduate studies in literature and anthropology at the University of California, Santa Cruz where he is working on a memoir and trying to one-up Jeff Buckley. Find his twitter here, @caseydayan. Find his band, “Moo,” here. More from this author →