In exploring the Khmer Rouge era your first recommended book is Angkor by Michael Coe. What can Angkor say about later Cambodian history? Angkor is an . My first book about Cambodia, Pol Pot's Smile, deals with the Khmer and literary history of this fairly new capital (permanent since ). This book is out of date. I've bought all of his books since the first publication came out in Chandler's research is based on the scholarship of the 70s.

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This is the definitive history in English, and arguably in any language, of a small country with a long and complicated, and at times terrible history. Chandler, who . A History of Cambodia book. Read 26 reviews from the world's largest community for readers. This clear and concise volume provides a timely overview of C. 6 Books to Read Before Making Your Way to Cambodia . An informative and factual read into the country's recent history and beyond.

And most people you will encounter will want to talk about it with you, so make sure you are an educated traveller.

Loung was trained as a child soldier in a work camp for orphans, her siblings were sent to labor camps, and those who survived the horrors would not be reunited until the Khmer Rouge was destroyed. In this political biography, David P. Chandler throws light on the shadowy figure of Pol Pot.

A History of Cambodia

Basing his study on interviews and on a wide range of sources in English, Cambodian, and French, the author illuminates the ideas and behavior of this enigmatic man and his entourage against the background of post—World War II events, providing a key to understanding this horrific, pivotal period of Cambodian history. Over the next four years, as she endures the deaths of family members, starvation, and brutal forced labor, Raami clings to the only remaining vestige of childhood—the mythical legends and poems told to her by her father.

In a climate of systematic violence where memory is sickness and justification for execution, Raami fights for her improbable survival. Enjoying This Article? With reference to his buildings Chandler says There were so many of them in fact, that workmanship was often sloppy, and by the end of his reign local supplies of sandstone and limestone for use at Angkor had run out p What is interesting is that Mahayana Buddhism doesn't take off, but Theravada Buddhism without any explicit royal promotion does, without any indication of pressure from above or without, but presumably due to missionary work from neighbouring Theravada Buddhists, this without big temples or massive stone consuming construction work strikes a cord and overtime becomes the dominant religion in the region.

The 10 Best Books About the Khmer Rouge in Cambodia

This is plainly pretty important as far as culture and society are concerned but the nature of historical knowledge about Cambodia means that we only can infer that it did happen and not how, why, or even precisely when. This mediaeval period based around Angkor Wat comes to an end, Chandler suggests one reason may have been the spread of malaria as mosquitoes thrived in the periodically stagnant waters of the canals and reservoirs.

Another serious problem was the rise of neighbouring powerful kingdoms of Thailand and Vietnam.

By the eighteenth century this reached the point that both agreed that Thailand was the father and Vietnam the mother of child-like Cambodia, a hopelessly wayward and backwards child whose hair required vigorous brushing, collar straightening, tie to be retied, while it's shoes were unbelievably scuffed.

Kings were crowned in Thailand and received seals of office from the Vietnamese. The country was largely rural, trade was dominated by the Chinese, cattle herding by Muslims from Malaya, while descendants of the Portuguese were responsible for the royal artillery.

Come the 19th century Cambodian kings imagine they can get out from under the guiding hands of the Thais and the Vietnamese by appealing to the French view spoiler [ the French were quite content to continue a notion of the Cambodians as children in need of a firm parental figure who could shape them to an adult exploitation of teak, and a properly grown up establishment of rubber farms hide spoiler ] , who imagine the kingdom to be wealthy but poorly managed, eventually they take over, providing the king with an annual dole of high grade opium in a beautiful box to help take his mind off things.

One might look at my following selection and ask where the contemporary Cambodian novels are.

The answer, sadly, is that the authors in Cambodia are marginalised and struggling — there aren't even any publishing houses. Very little of their work is translated into English.

Thus, there are many foreign authors in the following list. But good literature knows no nationality or borders. There are many myths about the Khmer Rouge's bloodthirstiness and brutality, but there was at least one place where they all were real: Security Prison 21 , the secret police's killing machine. Of the 14, or so prisoners who were brought there for questioning, only a handful survived.

One of them were the artist Vann Nath In this thin little book, he describes his horrifying year behind the barbed wired walls of S I had the privilege to meet him a couple of times and to me he was a man of very rare moral dignity; he resembled a Cambodian Nelson Mandela.

Top 10 books about Cambodia

He pitied his torturers as fellow humans, without forgiving them their deeds. This book ranks among the most important and strongest witness-stories of world literature.

Marguerite Duras's breakthrough novel was published in and most of the elements that would become the base for her masterpiece, The Lover , more than 30 years later are already there. A fatherless French teenager, living in great poverty at a small plantation in rural Cambodia, gets involved with a much older but wealthy Chinese businessman.

Age, race and class make them an impossible couple. Her mother and brother cynically tries to wring a few piastres out of the indecent affair.

Less romantic and more sleazy than The Lover, but equally good. In , the photographer and journalist Nic Dunlop more or less stumbled upon Duch, who had been hiding since the fall of the Khmer Rouge in Duch is a paradoxal figure: He got drawn into the Khmer Rouge and rose through the ranks.

After the fall of the regime, he became a born again Christian.Leave a Reply Cancel reply. The former school was transformed into an interrogation centre, where only a handful of the 14, Cambodians sent there survived.

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Asia Cambodia Books. Enjoying This Article? Here are 10 books about the Khmer Rouge, many of which were written by survivors.

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