Hmong Contemporary Issues

Les problématiques contemporaraines des Hmong

Hmoob Cov XWm Txheej rau Tam sim no

The Path of an Intellectual Hmong Woman
Dr. Kao-Ly Yang (Nkauj Hli Yaj) was born in Laos in Southeast Asia. She went to France as a child refugee from the refugees camps in Thailand. She did her schooling in France from second grade to her doctorate where she specialized in socio-cultural Anthropology, Linguistics, Teaching of French and Hmong, and Hmong Studies. She lived in France until 2000 before becoming a post-graduate in Medical Anthropology at the University of California, San Francisco where where she conducted a research on the quality of care for patients with hypertension within the Hmong American community in California. Since then, she has been living in Fresno where she pursuits her research on Hmong cultural and religious changes, and teaching of Hmong language, culture and literature. Certainly, her two most important contributions to the Hmong Studies -- and Hmong American community-- are the saving of Father Yves Bertrais' historical Archives from Thailand and its deposit at the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2004-2005, and the creation of the Hmong Minor , the first Hmong program focusing on Language, at California State University, Fresno in 2016. As an indigenous anthropologist, Dr. Kao-Ly Yang has been focusing her study on the Hmong language, culture, and literature since 1991. She believes that in order to preserve a culture, one needs to study and teach it with its very own language. Her choice to specialize in Hmong studies is mainly due to her admiration of the Hmong people's capacity and determination, otherwise inner strenght to survive wars, genocides, to overcome the fear of losing their language and culture, and to reinvent their identity despite all tragic migrations for the past 4000 years. To sharpen her courage to undertake projects, her motto is: "It is not who you are that matters most, it is what you do for others."
I love traveling, 
capturing meanings
that people  associate
with their lives,
and translating
them into pictures and writings.
My first trip to China,
in the provinces of Hunan, Guizhou and Yunnan where I reconnected with my Hmong heritage, which boosted my interest to study the Hmong/Miao culture.
Picture: Kao-Ly Yang
in Yunnan, China 
November 1994
Ph.D. Anthropology, University of Provence, Aix-en-Provence, France, 1999 (Graduated with Summa Cum Laude), (See Ph.D. Thesis )
Diplome d'Etudes Approfondies (Master of Philosophy), Sciences of Language & Didactics of French, University Paul Valérie, France, 1993. (Graduated with Magna Cum Laude),
Master, Sciences of Language & Didactics of French, University Paul Valérie, 1992.
Licence (B.A.), Sciences of Language & Teaching French as a Foreign Language, University Paul Valérie, 1991.

Licence (B.A.), Theoretical Physics, Unversity of Montpellier II, (Not finished), 1990.
Diplôme Universitaire d'Etudes Générales, Math-Physics-Chemistry,  Montpellier II, 1989.
Baccalaureate C (Scientific), High School, Nîmes,  France, 1987.

Award & Recognition
Recognition for Outstanding Lecturer, College of Arts and Humanities, CSU-Fresno, 2014
California State University of Fresno Oustanding Faculty Publication (twice), 2007 & 2009
Certificate of Recognition, Assemblywoman, Sarah Reyes, 2002
Gardeners' Choice of the Tale of the "Blue Fish", City of Creteil for the European Contest of the Most Blooming Cities,  2002
Recognition, Hmong National Development, 1999
Award for the Vocation of Anthropologist, Fondation de France, 1996
Award of the Best Refugee's Path, Fondation de France, 1992

Professional Experiences
+ Coordinator of the Hmong Language Program, 2012-present

+ Advisor of the Hmong Minor, 2016-present
+ Coordinator of the creation of the Hmong Minor, CSU-Fresno, 2012-2016

+ Hmong instructor,  beginning to advanced levels, UW-Madison, CSU-Fresno, Fresno City College, (2003-now)
+ French instructor, beginning to advanced levels, French Linguistics and Cooperation Center in Vientiane (Laos), APAZ Association (France), CSU-Fresno, Fresno City College,  (1996-now)
+ Instructor, HealthCare Interpreting, Reedley College, 2011-15
+ Postgraduate and Research Assistant, Southeast Asian Health Center, University of California, San Francisco, Fresno, 2002-2003

+ Project Director for the Project "Quality of Care for Southeast Asian Refugees", University of California, San Francisco, 2000-2002
+ Director, Center for 3-6 year old Children, Valdégour, Nimes, 1992

Present and Past Professional Activities
Creator and organizer of the Hmong Voices Series, Fresno State, 2017-
Founder & Board Director of the Hmong Language Association ( HLA ), 2016- now
Member, Hmong Studies Committee for the developement and promotion of Hmong studies, CSU-Fresno, 2016-now
President, Hmong Minor Committee, CSU-Fresno, 2013-2016
Vice-President, Council of the Teaching of Southeast Asian Language (CoTSEAL)
Board Director of the French Alliance of Fresno (AF)
Member of the California Language Teachers Association (CLTA)
Member of the Central Valley World Language Association (CVWLA)
Member, National Network on HIV Prevention in Southeast Asian Communities, 2002-03
Writer, Hmong Times Newspaper, 1999-2001
Associate  then Corresponding Member of the Institute for
Research on Southeast Asia/Maison de l'Asie-Pacifique

Board Director, Fonds d'Action Social (Grants for Migrant population), Region of the Languedoc-Roussillon,  France, 1996-1999.

Fieldworks & Research Themes:
Fieldworks: France, French Guiana, Laos, Thailand & USA
Hmong Culture and Language from traditional and contemporary perspectives
Cultural and beliefs Changes
Theories of ethnic boundaries for stateless people
Women roles
Teaching Hmong language & French
Hmong and French Linguistics

Hmong Literature

Selected Published Articles
+ in Troubling Borders. An Anthology of Art and Literature by Southeast Asian Women in the Diaspora: "Three Pearls Facing Unfaithfulness", 2014.
+ in Bulletin de l'Ecole Française d'Extreme-Orient (BEFEO): Mesurer et peser chez les Hmong du Laos. Aspects techniques et notions de précision
+ in Hmong Studies Journal: Syncretisme in Hmong System of Beliefs
+ in Book "Hmong/Miao in Asia: Reinterpretation of Hmong Surnames
+ in Hommes & Migrations: The Reproduction of Hmong Rituals in the French Context

Non-Published Textbooks for Hmong Language
Kao-Ly Yang, 2014, Speaking Hmong. Hais Lus Hmoob . Beginning Level, 196 p.
Kao-Ly Yang, 2014, Speaking Hmong. Hais Lus Hmoob . Beginning Level. WORKBOOK with Exercises, Lab and Speaking Activities,  64 p.
Kao-Ly Yang, 2015, A Hmong Family . Ib Tse Neeg Hmoob. 2015. 154 p.
Kao-Ly Yang, 2015, A Hmong Family . Ib Tse Neeg Hmoob. WORKBOOK with Exercises, Lab and Speaking Activities. Edition 2015. 47 p.
Kao-Ly Yang, 2015, Literacy and Literature in Hmong, 2015, 102 p. (Text and Lab).

Kao-Ly Yang. Hmong Grammar, 2014, 141 pages.

Kao-Ly Yang, 2015, Life in Hmong Literature. Thaum Dab Neeg Qhia Yus Sau lub Neej. 85 p. (Texts and Lab)
Kao-Ly Yang, 2016, Hmong Beliefs, Culture, Society, and History through Literature, 134 p. (Text and Lab)

Selected Conferences / Workshops
Conseil International d'Etudes Francophones (CIEF),  Winnipeg, Canada, 2015
California Language Teacher Association, Visalia, California, 2015
CoTSEAL, University of Wisconsin- Madison, 2012
CIEF, French Guiana, 2007
CSU- Fresno (several presentations)
University of Minnesota, 2005
University of Wisconsin-Madison, 2003 & 2012
University of California San Francisco, (several presentations)
Asian American Association- Salt Lake City, 2002
American Public Health Association (APHA), 2001
Hmong National Development, Inc, 199 & 2001

Selected  Themes  Presented
The Hmong French and American Identities, Winnipeg, 2014

Teaching Values in Hmong, California Langages Teachers Association (CLTA), 2014
The Difficulties of Teaching French to Students of Hmong Origin), French Guiana, 2007.
Teaching Tones in Hmong,
CLTA, Santa Clara, 2007
Pre-Reading Activities in French, CLTA, Saint Clara, 2007
The Adventure of Teaching a Recent Writing System: the Hmong Case, CLTA, Fresno, 2006
Where Do Hmong Women's Souls Go After Death? University of MN,  2005
The Goddess of Mercy Kuanyin in the Hmong Culture: an Example of Syncretism, CSUF-Fresno, 2005

+ Hmong Language, Culture & Literature
+ French Language, Culture & Literature
+ Asian American Women
+ Healthcare Interpreting

Consultation Experiences
+ Linguist, American Council for the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL), 2011- now

+ Expert Witness for Hmong culture, 2011
+ California Subject Examination for Teacher in Hmong ( CSET-Hmong ), 2007
+ Central Valley Nursing Diversity Project, University of California, San Francisco,  Survey in the Hmong community, Fresno, CA, 2003
+ Development of a curriculum of Hmong Language for the Academy Hope Charter School, St Paul, MN, 2001
+ Hmong dictionary French-Hmong in English-Hmong
+ Translation & Proof reading (scientific, medical, cultural, commercial)

+ Cultural consultation for the Night show of Hmong oral literature and music, DRAC (Direction Régionale des Affaires Culturelles), 1995

Contributions to the American Student Life
Advisor, The Hmong Language Club, CSU-Fresno, 2015-present.

Advisor, California State University of Fresno, The French Club, 2006-2008
Presenter, University of California, Los Angeles, The Association of Hmong Students, 2005
Speaker, Fresno City College, the USEAA Program 2002 & 2005
Speaker, Fresno Roosevelt High School, Graduations 2000 & 2001

Contribution to the Hmong French Community
Photo Exhibition of the Hmong in Laos and Conference, Nimes, 1998

Organization of the Nimes Hmong New Year, 1995

Contributions to the Asian American Community

+ Owner and writer of the Trilingual Website on Hmong Contemporary Issues, 2002-present
+ Advocacy for the creation of the Hmong Minor at California State University, Fresno, 2012-2016
+ Initiator and Facilitator to the Saving the archives of Father Yves Bertrais, one of the founders of the Hmong Latin writing system between the University of Wisconsin-Madison et the OMI (Oblats de Marie Immaculee)- 2004-2005
+ Coordination of the California Bill AB78 (Secret War), 2003
+ Keynote speaker of the Hmong Marysville New Year,  2002
+ Supporter of the Fresno Metro Ministry Advocacy for Hmong Elderly Hunger, 2001 & 2002
+ Supporter of the Fresno Hmong Women Foundraising for Dr. Tony Vang 's Campaign for School Board, 2002
+ Keynote speaker for the Hmong Yang Wameng Association, 2002
+ Coordination in Fresno for the Commission Hall Towm Meeting for Asian American & Pacific Islanders, Los Angeles, 2000
+ Hmong National Development Conferences, 1999 (Keynote Speaker) & 2001

Picture: Dr. Kao-Ly Yang
visiting Father Yves Bertrais,
aka Txiv Plig Nyiaj Pov,
in Thailand, 2003.
Picture: Kao-Ly Yang visiting Kiatong Lobliayao's house and grave
in the city of Phav Lav,
Non-Het District,
Xieng Khouang Province, Laos,
September 1996