A. L. Kahler is a historian and author. Her research and writing are informed by humanitarian concerns, laced with a sense of wonder, irony, and appreciation.
She has written a family memoir entitled History for Tenzin. Her academic interests are in the intersections of memory, identity, and storytelling and the nonfiction genre of family memoir.
Dr Kahler also lectures and runs workshops in public history, writing, and digital storytelling.
Angie L. Kahler was born in Louisiana, but grew up in California and Florida, USA. Thus, she always had trouble answering the question, “Where are you from?”, even as a young person. Her father worked in film and television and her mother was an elementary school teacher and aspiring writer. Angie is blessed with one younger brother and a large, quirky, loving, supportive, multi-generational, extended family.
After completing her first degree, a BA in Religion from Florida State University, Angie moved to Japan where she worked as an English teacher for three years. She then traveled and volunteered in India, interspersed with visits home and film work in the US. While volunteering with Tibetan refugees in northern India, Angie met her husband, Jamchen, a former political prisoner from Lhasa. As if all of this wasn’t unexpected enough, life then took them both to Australia.
Settling in Sydney’s Northern Beaches, Jamchen found rewarding work caring for people with severe disabilities. Angie worked on large-scale community arts projects, in migrant services, and, somewhat ironically given her own residency status at the time, in local government overseeing Australian citizenship ceremonies, including the ceremony in which Jamchen officially become an Aussie.
Angie and Jamchen then undertook protracted battles with Australian Immigration for visas for their two young nieces, stateless Tibetan refugees living in India as unaccompanied minors without families or guardians. Four hard-fought applications, two rejections, and many years later, both girls are now in Australia and growing into inspiring young women.
During this time, Angie also earned an MA in History and then her interdisciplinary PhD in History and Writing, both degrees at the University of New England in Armidale, NSW, Australia. In 2016, her PhD thesis was awarded the University of New England Chancellor’s Doctoral Research Medal.
Angie and her Tibetan-American-Australian family of four currently call Armidale, a small city in rural Australia, ‘home’.
History for Tenzin is a family memoir and Angie’s first book-length manuscript.
- Australian Society of Authors
- Oral History Australia
- University of New England Cultural and Creative Arts Network (U-CCAN)