Dia's Story Cloth

Dia Cha, Author, Nhia T. Cha, Illustrator, Chue Cha, Illustrator
Dia Cha, Author, Nhia T. Cha, Illustrator, Chue Cha, Illustrator Lee & Low Books $16.95 (24p) ISBN 978-1-880000-34-2
Reviewed on: 03/04/1996
Release date: 03/01/1996
Prebound-Sewn - 978-0-7807-7901-3
Prebound-Sewn - 978-0-606-14193-2
Prebound-Glued - 24 pages - 978-0-613-06808-6
Hardcover - 1 pages - 978-1-931016-11-7
Portable Document Format (PDF) - 978-1-60060-955-8
Paperback - 24 pages - 978-1-880000-63-2
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A folk art masterpiece from a Southeast Asian culture stands at the center of this thoughtful book. Intricately composed, painstakingly stitched by hand, the ""story cloth"" of the title was created by the author's aunt and uncle, Hmong who fled their native Laos for a refugee camp in Thailand. The story cloth records their experiences-which are also the author's own. Using details from the cloth as illustrations, Cha retells her life story, a meeting of Hmong history and a classic American immigration tale. Now an anthropologist in Colorado, Cha spent her early years during the 1960s in a Hmong village in Laos, where her family worked long days growing rice and corn. War tore the country apart; Cha's father was killed and she and her mother made a dangerous escape to Thailand, emigrating to the United States in 1979. The text is subdued; it is the needlework that drives home the poignancy of this cataclysmic account. For advanced readers, a lengthy afterword, by Joyce Herold, Denver Museum of Natural History's curator of ethnology, sets out historical background and assesses the story cloth as an art form. Ages 6-up. (Apr.)
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