A Chant to Soothe Wild Elephants

A Chant to Soothe Wild Elephants

by Jaed Coffin

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Overview

Six years ago at the age of twenty-one, Jaed Muncharoen Coffin, a half-Thai American man, left New England's privileged Middlebury College to be ordained as a Buddhist monk in his mother's native village of Panomsarakram—thus fulfilling a familial obligation. While addressing the notions of displacement, ethnic identity, and cultural belonging, A Chant to Soothe Wild Elephants chronicles his time at the temple that rain season—receiving alms in the streets in saffron robes; bathing in the canals; learning to meditate in a mountaintop hut; and falling in love with Lek, a beautiful Thai woman who comes to represent the life he can have if he stays. Part armchair travel, part coming-of-age story, this debut work transcends the memoir genre and ushers in a brave new voice in American nonfiction.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780306815263
Publisher: Hachette Books
Publication date: 01/07/2008
Pages: 224
Sales rank: 750,358
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.50(d)
Lexile: 910L (what's this?)

About the Author

Jaed Coffin holds a B.A. in philosophy from Middlebury College and an M.F.A. from the University of Southern Maine's Stonecoast Writing Program. A boxer, sea-kayaker, and lobster fisherman, he lives in Brunswick, Maine.

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