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Masked dance tradition rises from near extinction in Cambodia

Dancers get ready backstage before a performance of masked theater known as Khon at the Thailand Cultural Centre in Bangkok, Thailand November 7, 2018. The dance was recently listed by UNESCO, the United Nations' cultural agency, as an intangible cultural heritage, along with neighboring Cambodia's version of the dance known as Lakhon Khol. REUTERS/Jorge Silva

Dancers get ready backstage before a performance of masked theater known as Khon at the Thailand Cultural Centre in Bangkok, Thailand November 7, 2018. The dance was recently listed by UNESCO, the United Nations’ cultural agency, as an intangible cultural heritage, along with neighboring Cambodia’s version of the dance known as Lakhon Khol.

Cambodia’s centuries-old tradition of masked dance was nearly wiped out by the Khmer Rouge’s “Killing Fields” regime, but a handful of artists managed to keep it alive and are now working to pass it along to a new generation.

Date

08.01.2019 | 13:57

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‘Under the table’: Cambodia’s surrogate mothers risk jail for Chinese couples

A surrogate mother in Cambodia, pictured at five months pregnant in 2016.

Pregnant and scared, Yin hides in a house on the outskirts of Phnom Penh — one of an untold number of Cambodian surrogate mothers risking jail time for lucrative payouts from Chinese clients.

The end of China’s one-child policy has driven desperate couples too old to bring a baby to term to poorer countries in the Mekong region, where a “womb-for-rent” industry is brushing up against legal barriers. Cambodia banned commercial surrogacy in 2016 but still has brokers — and eligible young women — skirting the ban for a price.

Date

30.12.2018 | 14:40

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‘Sold by my brother’: the Mekong women pressed into marriage in China

This photo taken on October 2, 2018 shows Nary (name has been changed), a Cambodian victim of forced marriage to a Chinese man, cooking at home in Phnom Penh.

Everyone did well from Nary’s marriage to a Chinese man, except the young Cambodian bride herself, who returned home from the six-year ordeal destitute, humiliated and with little prospect of seeing her son again.

Date

11.12.2018 | 11:18

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Cambodia: Who runs the world? Not women!

A Cambodian-Muslim woman checks her smartphone at her shelter along the Mekong river in Phnom Penh on February 21, 2018.

“This is a man’s, man’s, man’s world,” James Brown crooned in 1966. And though Beyonce in 2011 announced in a song that “girls” run the world, this is not the case at all. James Brown’s statement holds true over 50 years later. Worldwide, the number of women in government and other positions of power remains low. How can “girls” run the world when generally men are at the steering wheel?

Date

09.08.2018 | 13:06

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Cambodia: Breaking free from cultural oppression and patriarchy

An inspiring new novel about the lives of Cambodian women, “Diving Deep, Going Far”, is one of the first to depict life as woman in the kingdom. It follows the lives of four young women – Nary, Nika, Soklin, and Ratana – who struggle to break free from cultural oppression and patriarchy, but triumph as they pass on the torch to the following generation.

Date

04.08.2018 | 13:34

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The Business of Women’s Bodies

Anyone tuning into mainstream pop music would find that a huge amount of songs seems to be interested in women’s bodies, whether through the lyrics or the video, which more often than not features one-dimensional women wearing little clothing, prancing around in front of the camera, playing no significant role other than to add a hint of sexuality in a neat package sold to the masses.

Date

23.07.2018 | 12:33

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Cambodian girls defy gender barriers to excel in technology

The Cambodian government has begun an initiative aimed at encouraging young women to study science and technology. The goal is for more women to become the future leaders in the country’s growing IT sector.

Date

18.07.2018 | 15:24

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