Reference : Between swampy backwaters and “golden” riverside: the water frontiers of Phnom Penh, ...
Scientific congresses, symposiums and conference proceedings : Unpublished conference
Social & behavioral sciences, psychology : Human geography & demography
Arts & humanities : History
http://hdl.handle.net/10993/22641
Between swampy backwaters and “golden” riverside: the water frontiers of Phnom Penh, Cambodia in historical perspective
English
Kolnberger, Thomas mailto [University of Luxembourg > Faculty of Language and Literature, Humanities, Arts and Education (FLSHASE) > Identités, Politiques, Sociétés, Espaces (IPSE) >]
2010
Yes
XVII ISA World Congress of Sociology
13-18 July
Research Committee on Regional and Urban Development RC21
Gothenburg
Sweden
[en] water front ; riverside ; history ; Phnom Penh ; Cambodia
[en] Between swampy backwaters and “golden” riverside: the water frontiers of Phnom Penh, Cambodia in historical perspective


Colonial Phnom Penh used to be an amphibious urban landscape, tucked between canals and the riversides of the Mekong, Tonle Sap and Bassac. Periodically filled up lakes and swamps during the monsoon – a kind of marshland locally called boeung – still dot the town area. However, the agricultural lands around the swamps and the sites of “floating villages” (motley throngs of boats & houses on stilts) along the riversides, once neglected, are now a golden playground for developers’ extravaganzas.
Today in Cambodia, power is money and money (and not land-property) is power. The rapid expansion of the city in all directions is driven by the need for construction plots to attract direct investments. As in the past, the role and meaning of the urban waterscape is changing. The history of Phnom Penh offers a unique case study for persistency and adaptation in the interaction of people, water, and land. This paper will present the transforming perspectives, and the symbolic and social connotations of the urban waterscapes of this Southeast Asian city since its (re)founding in French colonial times (with references to the “hydraulic cities” of the ancient Khmer) providing insights to today’s changes in a longue durée.
Fonds National de la Recherche - FnR
Researchers ; Professionals ; Students
http://hdl.handle.net/10993/22641

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