October 16, 2008 Former U.N. Ambassador Sichan Siv to Discuss New Memoir at the Library on Oct. 24
Press Contact: Press contact: Audrey Fischer (202) 707-0022
Public Contact: Public contact: Anchi Hoh (202) 707-5673
While the United States battled the Communists of North Vietnam in the 1960s and '70s, the neighboring country of Cambodia was attacked from within by dictator Pol Pot and the Khmer Rouge, who imprisoned, enslaved and murdered the educated and intellectual members of the population. One such target of the regime was university graduate Sichan Siv, who fled to Thailand and eventually to the United States. When he returned to the killing fields of Cambodia in 1992, it was as a senior U.S. representative. Author and former Ambassador to the United Nations Sichan Siv will discuss and sign his new memoir, "Golden Bones: An Extraordinary Journey from Hell in Cambodia to a New Life in America" (HarperCollins) at the Library of Congress at noon on Friday, Oct. 24 in the Whittall Pavilion of the Thomas Jefferson Building at 10 First Street S.E., Washington, D.C. The event, which is free and open to the public, is sponsored by the Library's Asian Division. A display of books on the culture and literature of Cambodia will be on view from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Oct. 23-25, in the Asian Reading Room, located in Room 150 of the Jefferson Building. Siv's stirring memoir relives his days under the repressive regime of the Khmer Rouge, his successful escape and his poignant return nearly two decades later. The book's title, "Golden Bones," refers to the ironic pronouncement upon his birth that he would live a charmed life, protected from harm and full of good fortune. The Library of Congress, the nation's oldest federal cultural institution, is the world's preeminent reservoir of knowledge, providing unparalleled integrated resources to Congress and the American people. Founded in 1800, the Library seeks to further human understanding and wisdom by providing access to knowledge through its magnificent collections, which bring to bear the world's knowledge in almost all of the world's languages. The Library's Asian Division serves as a central repository for all types of Asian publications that are not broadly available at other locations in the United States. Initiated in 1869 with a gift of 10 works in 934 volumes offered to the United States by the Emperor of China, the Library's Asian collection of more than 2 million items is the largest and most comprehensive outside of Asia.