The Khmer Lands of Vietnam

Environment, Cosmology and Sovereignty

Philip Taylor

  • Published:
  • Pages: 368 pp.
  • Illustrated
Available from NIAS Press in Europe only.

Explores the unique world of the Khmer Krom, the indigenous people of Southern Vietnam who are regarded with ambivalence by nationalists in both Vietnam and Cambodia. As well as its ethnographic insights and offer of an indigenous, non-Vietnamese history of the region, the book will also attract environmental studies scholars interested in a close-grained study of the ecology of a river delta.

 

The indigenous people of Southern Vietnam, the Khmer Krom, live in a region over which Vietnam and Cambodia have contesting claims. Regarded by nationalists in both countries with ambivalence and under pressure to change their way of life, they have coped with destructive wars, environmental re-engineering and nation-building policies by selectively engaging the world beyond, while continuing to draw upon local resources, self-help networks and understandings. This path-breaking study uncovers the sophistication of the Khmer Krom ecological repertoire and charts their diverse adaptations to an ecologically complex river delta. It relates the myths through which they orient themselves in place and history and invest their local circumstances with cosmological significance. As well as its ethnographic insights and offer of an indigenous, non-Vietnamese history of the region, the book will also attract environmental studies scholars interested in a close-grained study of the ecology of a river delta.

 

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Philip Taylor is Senior Fellow in the Department of Anthropology at the Australian National University.

Philip Taylor is Senior Fellow in the Department of Anthropology at the Australian National University.

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by Matt Galway, The University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada
From journal:
Pacific Affairs, vol. 89, no. 1 (March 2016)

“The Khmer Lands of Vietnam is (…) a thoughtful analysis of an important yet oft-overlooked ethnic group that inhabits the rich Mekong Delta.”

“The Khmer Lands of Vietnam is (…) a thoughtful analysis of an important yet oft-overlooked ethnic group that inhabits the rich Mekong Delta.”

by William B Noseworthy, University of Wisconsin-Madison
From journal:
The Newsletter #72 and/or newbooks.asia

"(…) this work represents one of the most extensive, impressive ethnographies that any non-Vietnamese or Khmer researcher has been able to complete of the region since the work of French colonial orientalist scholar Etienne Aymonier in 1900.

"(…) this work represents one of the most extensive, impressive ethnographies that any non-Vietnamese or Khmer researcher has been able to complete of the region since the work of French colonial orientalist scholar Etienne Aymonier in 1900. Thus, The Khmer Lands of Vietnam is a work that will be an important read for students, teachers and researchers of Environmental History, Anthropology, History of Southeast Asia, Buddhist Studies and Vietnam. "

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