March 24, 2023

Seeking Refuge-Kao KaliaMINNEAPOLIS — Global Minnesota and the Immigration History Research Center of the University of Minnesota present, “Seeking Refuge: Minnesota and Refugee Experience” with the book launch of Kao Kalia Yang’s The Song Poet, on April 21, 2016, from 6 to 9 p.m. at 175 Willey Hall, University of Minnesota. A book signing and reception will follow main event next door in 120 Andersen Library.

Kao Kalia Yang, award-winning author of The Latehomecomer, launches her new book, The Song Poet. A memoir of her father, a Hmong Song Poet, this book follows her father as he was driven out of the mountains of Laos by America’s Secret War, to a Thai refugee camp, and finally to Minnesota. The Song Poet recounts the loss of home, the hopes for the future, and the hard reality of life faced by those seeking refuge in the U.S.

Yang’s reading is part of a larger discussion on Minnesota’s unique role welcoming refugees from Europe, Asia, and Africa for over sixty years. Since 2000, the percentage of foreign-born residents in Minnesota has risen faster than the national average (46.4 to 35.7, respectively). A panel discussion will explore this history and the ongoing humanitarian crisis facing refugees globally. Panelists include László G. Fülöp, Hungarian American Coalition Vice President, who fled Hungary for Austria and then Minnesota in 1957; Abdi Roble, Executive Director of the Somali Documentary Project and author of The Somali Diaspora: A Journey Away; and Professor Mai Na Lee, University of Minnesota, whose book, Dreams of a Hmong Kingdom examines how the Hmong negotiated autonomy at the margins of France’s empire.

A reception and book signing will follow the reading and discussion.

For more info, please follow the link provided:

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