50% Falang

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50% Falang

50 Stories from a Half-Breed Abroad in Southeast Asia

Authored by Austin Saysana Outhavong

How far would you go to reclaim your heritage?

As an American-born son of a Lao immigrant, Austin Outhavong ventured to Laos and Thailand to discover his father's heritage, and to try to make it his own. Though racially 50% Lao, Austin was culturally 100% falang, the Lao word for "foreigner." He set out on a two-year pilgrimage of cultural reclamation.

He journeyed to the Land of a Million Elephants and to the Land of Smiles, teaching English at a public school in rural Thailand, studying the Thai and Lao languages, and traveling extensively. In between these pursuits, Austin found himself confronting the drug trade in the Golden Triangle, hugging a Cambodian toilet, kickboxing an oversized high school student, and unwittingly having his ears excavated by a Vietnamese barber.

Starting at 0% Lao and 100% Falang, each chapter brings Austin closer and closer to his goal of becoming 50% Falang.

Will he make it?

"Austin's unique book is a travelogue with a twist: a young Lao-American explores his father's homeland for the first time. Whether he is battling leeches in the jungle or munching on crickets at his family's home, Austin adroitly navigates this new world while bringing the reader along for the ride."

Brett Dakin, author of Another Quiet American: Stories of Life in Laos

Publication Date:
1456393375 / 9781456393373
Page Count:
Binding Type:
US Trade Paper
Trim Size:
5.25" x 8"
Black and White
Related Categories:
Travel / Asia / Southeast

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