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Memory and (re)making moral order in the aftermath of violence in a highland Khmer village in Cambodia.

Zucker, Eve Monique (2007) Memory and (re)making moral order in the aftermath of violence in a highland Khmer village in Cambodia. PhD thesis, London School of Economics and Political Science.

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This research is about how moral order is (re)made in the wake of cataclysmic violence and dislocation in a village in Cambodia's Southwest. The village locale has been a Khmer Rouge base and battlefield for nearly 30 years between 1970 and 1998. The study, based on fieldwork carried out in 2001-2003, draws together the themes of relatedness, morality and memory to examine the consequences of the violence of the past on present day relations and practices. More precisely, I argue that the experiences of the village in the early days of the revolution, when villagers turned on each other, not only had a devastating impact on the social and moral order at the time they occurred but continue to impair the remaking of moral order today and has impacts on responses to other social changes occurring in recent years. The thesis includes an analysis of both the memory of the violence of the past, including its moral dimensions and relations to other pasts, and an analysis of the means by which relatedness and moral order is re-established through trust, kinship, commensality, shared stories, and village rituals. It also includes a comparison with villages in the neighbouring commune that suffered similar but not identical experiences, arguing that these differing experiences shape present ways of healing and making the future. By addressing these issues, this dissertation will provide a unique case study that contributes to the anthropology of post-violence memory and recovery and the emerging anthropology of morality, as well as make an ethnographic contribution to Cambodian studies.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Uncontrolled Keywords: Anthropology, Cultural, South Asian Studies
Sets: Collections > ProQuest Etheses

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