Found is an artistic representation of the poetry of Souvankham Thammavongsa, a Laotian woman born in a refugee camp in northeastern Thailand who immigrated to Toronto. Her dramatic birth and uncertain early life—without a land to call home and without a passport—led to a revelation that is deeply felt by many artists when they discover their medium: “When I learned to read…I knew this, this would be my way in.”
Melvyn Goldstein, a social anthropologist at Case Western Reserve University and an expert on Tibet, has spent the last 24 years studying the nomads and farmers of Western Tibet, a people who live in one of the world’s harshest environments at altitudes between 15,200 to 17,200 feet.
I visited this area in 1993 with my father and brother and asked Professor Goldstein how the nomads’ lives had changed over the last 17 years. His answer: “They’ve changed tremendously in some ways. Many now ride motorcycles instead of horses, but they’re a great success story because, like us, they’re picking and choosing what they want from modernity—and in their view, the essence of their unique way of life is still intact.”
Goldstein, a member of the National Academy of Sciences, will present a history about the survival of these nomads’ way of life in the face of powerful economic, political and socio-cultural changes, and he’ll address their prospects for the future.In Person:
In Shining Spirit, a family separated by exile is brought back together through music. Jamyang Yeshi is a Tibetan musician who first escaped Tibet for Dharamsala, India, in 1998 and now lives in Canada. With the help of multi-track recording technology, Jamyang (in Canada) and his brother Tsundue (in the U.S.) join voices with the family they left behind in Tibet. Filmed between 2006 and 2009, Shining Spirit is a testament to the power of music, the resilience of Tibetan culture and the enduring bond of a family separated by politics and geography. This screening will be followed by a special performance by Jamyang Yeshi.
Q&A and Performance by Jamyang YeshiIn Person: