Themes and message

Parents’ expectations

This theme is illustrated by the way in which Pangma-La’s father relates to his daughter. Because he is a mountaineer and a strong man, he believes that his daughter should be the same. This is why he names her after the unique and unmovable Shining Mountain and raises her with the idea that she should have the same values as the mountain.

Because he spends years in which he teaches her how to climb mountains, the man shows that he is very determined to see his daughter accomplish his expectations: climbing the Shining Mountain with him. During their trip towards the mountain top, the father is unaware of his daughter’s pain and tiredness. It almost seems like he is deliberately ignoring his daughter, trying to toughen her up for the difficult challenge. In the end, his unrealistic expectations lead Pangma-La to make the ultimate sacrifice: to give her life to accomplish her father’s wish.

The story shows how a parent’s dreams of greatness may not always prove to be the same as the child’s. The story gives the impression that Pangma-La is not truly passionate about mountain climbing, but mainly enga...

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