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Forest of StruggleMoralities of Remembrance in Upland Cambodia$
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Eve Monique Zucker

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780824836115

Published to Hawaii Scholarship Online: November 2016

DOI: 10.21313/hawaii/9780824836115.001.0001

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Mountains, Morals, and Memory

Mountains, Morals, and Memory

(p.133) 7 Mountains, Morals, and Memory
Forest of Struggle

Eve Monique Zucker

University of Hawai'i Press

This chapter examines how the space of potency and enchantment on the edge of the forest between the wild and the civil offers a site for contested moral meanings and practices in O'Thmaa. Building upon the idea that disorder and violence appear to be managed in part through a process of embedding stories in the landscape, the chapter shows how villagers in Prei Phnom and Doung Srae incorporate local stories to interpret the past and the present. It explains how features of the landscape remind Cambodian people of particular moral tales, which are told and passed on to their children, who are then able to narrate them themselves. It considers two types of stories, those of a historical event and those of mythological giants, both of which often contain moral lessons and are told in varying ways to compensate for and reflect present circumstances. It also discusses the notion of memory by focusing on the events concerning the Thai Invasion of the nineteenth century and Khmer Rouge era.

Keywords:   enchantment, forest, O'Thmaa, violence, landscape, local stories, moral tales, memory, Thai Invasion, Khmer Rouge

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