April 6, 2023

AAP staff report

Bryan Thao Worra
Bryan Thao Worra

Award-winning Lao American writer Bryan Thao Worra is scheduled to speak at the University of California, Davis on Monday, March 7. His presentation, “Transitions: Refugee Memories & Imagination in Diasporic Expression” will run from 6:30 to 8 p.m. in the Risling Room, Hart Hall, 3rd floor on the UC Davis campus. The event is free to the public.

The Southeast Asian conflicts of the 20th century were complex and often poorly understood, including the Laotian Civil War, also known as “The Secret War” that took place between 1954-1975. Today, over 400,000 refugees with roots in Laos make their homes in the US. For ethnic Lao, after 40 years, less than 40 books in their own words have been published in the U.S. Over 12,758 Lao are believed to reside in Sacramento and the surrounding area.

Thao Worra will discuss the intersections between history, literature, imagination, belief, and global policy and how the arts can play a pivotal effect in transforming the world.

Born in Laos in 1973, Bryan Thao Worra holds over 20 awards for his writing and arts leadership including an NEA Fellowship in Literature. He is the author of six books with writing appearing in over 100 international publications. He is the first Lao American professional member of the Horror Writer Association. He represented the nation of Laos in 2012 as a Cultural Olympian during the London Summer Games.

27e33799-18b2-4b37-82e2-16647438def3His 2013 book, “DEMONSTRA,” was selected as Book of the Year by the Science Fiction Poetry Association. He has been a guest of honor at the CONvergence convention in Minnesota, as well as the HP Lovecraft Film Festival and other events across the United States.

He is currently working artist and author Nor Sanavongsay to establish Sahtu Press, a nonprofit Lao American publishing company based in the Bay Area focusing on children’s literature and poetry.

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