Tenzing Sonam

Tenzing Sonam, writer/filmmaker, was born in 1959 in Darjeeling, India. After graduating from Delhi University, he worked for a year in the Tibetan Government-in-Exile in Dharamshala. He specialized in documentary filmmaking at the Graduate School of Journalism at the University of California, Berkeley. He was a founder-member of the Bay Area Friends of Tibet.

Along with his wife and filmmaking partner, Ritu Sarin, Tenzing runs White Crane Films, which has specialized in films on Tibetan subjects. Their films include “The Reincarnation of Khyentse Rinpoche”, “The Trial of Telo Rinpoche”, “A Stranger in My Native Land”, “The Shadow Circus”, and “Dreaming Lhasa”. He is currently based in Delhi.

Tenzing Sonam on TibetWrites

Articles [8]

  • China’s India PR Guy Ram can claim neither the fire of idealism nor the smokescreen of ignorance to justify his unquestioning promotion of the totalitarian Beijing regime and its colonial hold on Tibet. 26 December 2007
  • A Cold War in Shangri La – The CIA in Tibet Four decades after the CIA first got involved in Tibet, Roger McCarthy looks back and sums up its outcome: “If we look at what we did to Tibet as about the best that we could do, then I say that we have failed … miserably.” 26 December 2007
  • Dreaming by the Blue Lake All I can retrieve is a feeling of unreality and a sense of emptiness, buoyed by deeper unresolved emotions that once again question who I really am and what I hope to discover by coming here. 26 December 2007
  • Out of the Red The Karmapa’s escape reminds us forcefully that the cause we are fighting for is alive and just and as desperate as ever. 26 December 2007
  • Until the last Tibetan Independence is the one aspiration that can unite all Tibetans, whether inside or outside Tibet. 26 December 2007
  • A Stranger in My Native Land Tenzing and Ritu travel to Kumbum, Takster, Lhasa, and Sangta in Tibet. 26 December 2007
  • Tibet at a Crossroads Given that China is a totalitarian state, there is no way it can accept the Middle Way approach without itself first undergoing a major transformation. 26 December 2007
  • Why the March matters What we exile Tibetans can do is to strengthen our democratic foundations by exercising our rights to free expression and action. 21 June 2008

Reviews [2]

  • Mountain Patrol: Kekexili Review by Tenzin Sonam of Lu Chuan’s film Kekexili: Mountain Patrol: The film is a deftly-crafted, gritty and uncompromising tale of greed and heroism set within a larger theme of man and nature. 19 August 2006
  • Telling the Exile Tibetan Story Like It Is Review by Dechen Pemba of Tenzing Sonam and Rutu Sarin’s film Dreaming Lhasa: For so many Tibetans born in exile, Tibet is significant as an absence, an omnipresent looming large all-encompassing void. 9 May 2006


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