Survival- The theme of survival is that loung and here family must survive though the constant pressure the Khmer rouge are putting on them with: lack of food, nutrition, and shelter. Making everyone weaker while the Khmer rouge make them work harder, and many people went crazy and killed themselves or ate poisonous mushrooms. “The round belly that I used to wrap my arms around is now caved in and showing his rib cage. Yet he always takes the last and smallest portions of the leftovers" Throughout most of the book the Khmer rouge are constantly reducing the rations of the workers for their soldiers, and people are dieing of sicknesses because there are no real doctors for the people who work for the Khmer rouge. Perseverance- Loungs family must preserver though all that the Khmer rouge are putting them though and try to hold their confidence that the Cambodian army will come to save them because if they lose that confidence they may go crazy like many people do in this book and end up giving in to starvation, and or killing themselves because of all of the pressure they have. “She has become known as "the crazy lady." she eventually ate some poisonous food and died the same way her daughters did. Her body was found by one of the villagers the next day, all contorted and bloody." Family- The theme of family is that the ung family must stick together and help each other from going crazy and or killing someone for food because of malnutrition. “We survive this period because Pa is friendly with the chief." In the book their family is almost broken down to nothing but they held on and kept what little they had left together and it helped them though the war. “Pa is able to get extra food for the gifts he gives to the chief"