2009 was the 100th anniversary of the birth of the famous “Red Prince” Souphanuvong, president of the Lao PDR until 1986, and Advisor of Communist Party’s Central Committee Party until his passing in 1995. Such centenaries are auspicious times in Lao culture, and consequently there have appeared several biographies of the “beloved leader”.
Featured here are: เรียนรู้ประวัติศาสตร์ลาวผ่านชีวิตเจ้าสุพานุวง โดย ศุขปรีดา พนมยงค์ (Understanding Lao History through the Life of Prince Souphanuvong by Sukprīdā Phanomyong), and ປະທານສຸພານຸວົງ : ຊີວິດ ແລະ ການເຄື່ອນໄຫວ ປະຕິວັດ (President Souphanuvong: Life and Revolutionary Movement, produced by Research Institute of Social Science), being further contributions to the ongoing elaboration of Lao political iconography. These are unreservedly positive accounts of the Prince’s life and achievements, compiled by authors from either side of the Mekong. Both are illustrated with black and white photographs covering events from childhood until his passing.
Interestingly, we seem to be enjoying something of an awakening of interest in Lao history, with the NLA receiving some 10 titles of histories published in Laos in the last two years. The broader context seems to be the 450th anniversary of Viengchan in 2010, which was officially celebrated by the Lao government.
Readers can find a list of selected titles here.