By David Chandler

ISBN-10: 0813343631

ISBN-13: 9780813343631

During this transparent and concise quantity, writer David Chandler offers a well timed evaluation of Cambodia, a small yet more and more noticeable Southeast Asian state. Praised through the Journal of Asian reports as an “original contribution, more suitable to the other current work,” this acclaimed textual content has now been thoroughly revised and up to date to incorporate fabric analyzing the early historical past of Cambodia, whose well-known Angkorean ruins now allure multiple million travelers every year, the demise of Pol Pot, and the revolution and ultimate cave in of the Khmer Rouge. The fourth version displays contemporary study via significant students in addition to Chandler’s lengthy immersion within the topic and comprises a wholly new part at the demanding situations dealing with Cambodia at the present time, together with an research of the present country of politics and sociology and the expanding pressures of globalization. This finished review of Cambodia will light up, for undergraduate scholars in addition to basic readers, the historical past and modern politics of a rustic lengthy misunderstood.

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Additional info for A History of Cambodia (4th Edition)

Example text

The fact that they came from India (just as our polysyllables so often come from Greece and Rome) was not considered a reason for alarm. Like many Southeast Asian countries, Cambodia has a legend that originates with the marriage of a foreigner and a dragon princess, or nagi, whose father was the king of a waterlogged country. According to one version of the myth, a brahman named Kaundinya, armed with a magical bow, appeared one day off the shore of Cambodia. The dragonprincess paddled out to meet him.

We hear no Cambodian voices, as we do from the seventh century onward in the form of stone inscriptions. After the waning of Funan, in fact, our sources become richer and harder to use. 29 There are some two hundred datable inscriptions, in both languages, from the seventh century, and these give us a picture of the way Cambodian society was put together. According to the inscriptions, Cambodian society was divided, informally at least, into those who understood Sanskrit and those who understood only Khmer.

We have already noted that the term “king,” or raja, probably meant less in Funan than it did in medieval Europe. Another important term, knjom, which can be translated as “slave,” seems to have meant something more ambiguous to the Khmer than our word slave. 30 They had many levels of social status, different origins, and many kinds of duties. Those toiling in the fields resembled black slaves in the antebellum American South. Others, especially those attached to temples, may have seen themselves as enjoying quasi-clerical status.

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