Early Findings
Cambodian Women’s Oral History Project
on gender-based violence under the
Khmer Rouge regime
Theresa de Lan...
Abstract
The CambodianWomen’s Oral History Project was launched as an
independent research project in 2013 with the aim to...
Background relative to ECCC
▪ Office ofCo-Investigative Judges
▪ Closing Order Case 002 (15 September 2010)
▪ Forced Marri...
Early Research
Kayanee Mam, “Evidence of Sexual Abuse during the Rule of Democratic Kampuchea,” Searching for theTruth
(Do...
Methodology: Oral History
Life story
Shared authority
Women exclusive
WHO/SRSG SVC
Social Change
Informed Consent
Safety/S...
Process
Independent Research
Kickstarter
CDP
Intermediaries
CDP
TPO
KdK
YRDC
VSS
YfP
Psychological Support
de Langis ©2014
Framework
Feminist/Gendered
WPS UN SCR Agenda
(1325, 1820, etc.)
CEDAW
de Langis ©2014
Culture: Chbap Srey
Mother, daughter,
sister, wife
Patience
Silence
Honor
de Langis ©2014
Interviews
▪ 17 women
▪ 16 Provinces
▪ Khmer, Cham, Kreung
▪ Ages from 48 – 82
▪ Includes KR-affiliated, “New
People” and ...
Forced Marriage
▪ Forced Marriage
▪ Abusive Forced Marriage
(includes rape, sometimes
ordered by KR officials)
▪ Multiple ...
SexualViolence
▪ Victim of rape
▪ Witness of rape
▪ Knowledge of rape (rape culture)
▪ Stigma/Shame (includes ongoing
trau...
SexualViolence: Some types
▪ Mass rape
▪ Gang rape
▪ Rape with object
▪ Sexual mutilation
▪ Sexual slavery
▪ Multiple rape...
Code 6: “Do not abuse women”
Khos Silathor
“illicit sex”
Highlights
• Longevity of conflict experience
•Under bombardment/South/NorthVN abuses
•In KR-controlled areas
•Multi-gener...
Motivation: Breaking silence to shift blame and
shame from victim to perpetrator
•“Future generation”
•Non-repetition
•His...
Outstanding Questions
Who will report and when
to whom variance
(ElizabethWood)
Definitional ambiguity (“Is
this rape? I a...
Key (tentative) conclusions: Women’s story of their experiences of
violence provide us a different, and therefore more nua...
Next Steps
Archives
▪ Validate
translations/transcriptions
Dissemination
▪ Website (perpetuate)
▪ Academic/Practitioner
Pu...
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Cambodian Women’s Oral History Project on gender-based violence under the Khmer Rouge regime

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Cambodian Women’s Oral History Project on Gender-based violence under the Khmer Rouge regime

Theresa de Langis, Ph.D., Affiliate Fellow
Center for Khmer Studies

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Cambodian Women’s Oral History Project on gender-based violence under the Khmer Rouge regime

  1. 1. Early Findings Cambodian Women’s Oral History Project on gender-based violence under the Khmer Rouge regime Theresa de Langis, Ph.D., Affiliate Fellow Center for Khmer Studies 30 April 2014, Phnom Penh, Cambodia
  2. 2. Abstract The CambodianWomen’s Oral History Project was launched as an independent research project in 2013 with the aim to correct the historical erasure of women’s experiences of a wide scope of sexualized violence under the regime. With a goal of the collection 20 life-story testimonies from survivors and witnesses throughout Cambodia, the project recently collected its 18th narrative and is now preparing files for a public access archive.The arc of the total narrative encompasses French colonial rule to the present day, from narrators that reach from all corners of Cambodia. The presentation will highlight early findings of the project, and their potential relevance to Case 002/002 in its inclusion of rape.The presentation will also touch on the shared-authority, social-change methodology of the project, and to the significance of life -story accounts to gender and genocide globally. de Langis ©2014
  3. 3. Background relative to ECCC ▪ Office ofCo-Investigative Judges ▪ Closing Order Case 002 (15 September 2010) ▪ Forced Marriage ▪ Rape Inside Forced Marriage. ▪ Excludes Rape Outside Forced Marriage “The official CPK policy regarding rape was to prevent its occurrence and to punish the perpetrators. Despite the fact that this policy did not manage to prevent rape, it cannot be considered that rape was one of the crimes used by the CPK leaders to implement the common purpose.” ▪ Trial Chamber ▪ Scope of Case 002/02 (4 April 2014) ▪ Forced Marriage (National) ▪ Rape within Forced Marriage ▪ InternationalCo-Prosecutor ▪ Supplementary Submission in Case 004 (24April 2014) Requests the investigation of sexual or gender-based violence as well as forced marriage in key districts.The allegations include forced marriages, rapes and sexual violence outside the context of forced marriages, including instances where women were raped prior to being executed, and instances where women who reported rapes during the Khmer Rouge period were subsequently executed. de Langis ©2014
  4. 4. Early Research Kayanee Mam, “Evidence of Sexual Abuse during the Rule of Democratic Kampuchea,” Searching for theTruth (Documentation Center of Cambodia, March 2001) Nakagawa Kasumi, Gender-Based Violence during the Khmer Rouge Regime: Stories of Survivors from the Democratic Kampuchea (1975-1979) (Cambodian Defenders Project, 2008) Farina So, The Hijab of Cambodia: Memories of Cham MuslimWomen after the Khmer Rouge (Documentation Center of Cambodia, 2011) Doung Savorn, The Mystery of SexualViolence Under the Khmer Rouge Regime (Cambodian Defenders Project, June 2011) Katrina Natale, “’I Could Feel My Soul Flying Away from My Body:’ A Study on Gender-Based Violence during Democratic Kampuchea in Battambang and Svay Rieng Provinces” (Cambodian Defenders Project, November 2011) Theresa de Langis and Silke Studzinsky, Briefing Paper to the Special Representative of the Secretary-General on SexualViolence in Conflict on the ECCC, the Cambodian Women’s Hearing, and Steps for Addressing SexualViolence under the Khmer Rouge Regime, (unpublished, May 2012) de Langis ©2014
  5. 5. Methodology: Oral History Life story Shared authority Women exclusive WHO/SRSG SVC Social Change Informed Consent Safety/Security de Langis ©2014
  6. 6. Process Independent Research Kickstarter CDP Intermediaries CDP TPO KdK YRDC VSS YfP Psychological Support de Langis ©2014
  7. 7. Framework Feminist/Gendered WPS UN SCR Agenda (1325, 1820, etc.) CEDAW de Langis ©2014
  8. 8. Culture: Chbap Srey Mother, daughter, sister, wife Patience Silence Honor de Langis ©2014
  9. 9. Interviews ▪ 17 women ▪ 16 Provinces ▪ Khmer, Cham, Kreung ▪ Ages from 48 – 82 ▪ Includes KR-affiliated, “New People” and “Base People” ▪ 1 transgendered; 1 factory worker in PP; 1 S-21 “nurse”; 1 house servant ofTa Mok Archives Transcript/ Translation Video Photos de Langis ©2014
  10. 10. Forced Marriage ▪ Forced Marriage ▪ Abusive Forced Marriage (includes rape, sometimes ordered by KR officials) ▪ Multiple marriages ▪ Polygamy (husband takes on multiple wives; married husband engages in forced marriage) ▪ Transactional/Survival Marriages Marriage Forced Marriage 9 Abusive Forced Marriage (includes rape) 4 Multiple marriages 9 Polygamy (mentioned) 3 Transactional /Survival 2 de Langis ©2014
  11. 11. SexualViolence ▪ Victim of rape ▪ Witness of rape ▪ Knowledge of rape (rape culture) ▪ Stigma/Shame (includes ongoing trauma) ▪ Child from rape ▪ Spontaneous mention of suicide ▪ Mention of Code 6 ,“immoral offenses,” Khos Silathor (Punished) SexualViolence Victim of rape 10 Witness of rape 6 Knowledge of rape 16 Stigma/Shame of Victims 4 Child from rape 2 Suicidal 3 Code 6 17 (3) de Langis ©2014
  12. 12. SexualViolence: Some types ▪ Mass rape ▪ Gang rape ▪ Rape with object ▪ Sexual mutilation ▪ Sexual slavery ▪ Multiple rapes ▪ Public rape/sexual assault ▪ Rape of enemy ▪ Rape in prison  Rape before execution  Rape by cadre and leaders  Sexual harassment/humiliation de Langis ©2014
  13. 13. Code 6: “Do not abuse women” Khos Silathor “illicit sex”
  14. 14. Highlights • Longevity of conflict experience •Under bombardment/South/NorthVN abuses •In KR-controlled areas •Multi-generational violence/rapes •Role of Leaders/Accused •Role of friendship in survival •Forms of resistance (“crazy”; illness; against rape/FM) •Gendered roles/pressures & obligations •Forced versus arranged marriage, other variations •Surplus of widows/FHH post-KR •Full range of abuses: •Pregnancy; wet nurses; separation from children; widowhood; mourning roles; on-going poverty, displacement; KR leaders/perpetrators still in power today, etc. de Langis ©2014
  15. 15. Motivation: Breaking silence to shift blame and shame from victim to perpetrator •“Future generation” •Non-repetition •History/remembrance •Age “In fact, my [civil party] complaint for Case 002 is about how they killed my parents. But I also mention the rape. If I am the court I need to push the process about raping minor girl and sexual abuse. If they do not, what can I do? I have offered to dare to come in front of the court. If they do not invite me to listen to my story, what can I do? ” de Langis ©2014
  16. 16. Outstanding Questions Who will report and when to whom variance (ElizabethWood) Definitional ambiguity (“Is this rape? I am not sure.”) “Distinct crime” where shame and stigma related to the crime may have greater impact than crime itself. Cultural narratives de Langis ©2014
  17. 17. Key (tentative) conclusions: Women’s story of their experiences of violence provide us a different, and therefore more nuanced, understanding of the atrocity Crimes continue (abusive forced marriage) Patterns of sexual violence “replicated” (gang rape by young male cadre for punishment) Impacts continue (access to justice; trauma; stigma) Insecurity unresolved (KR return?) de Langis ©2014
  18. 18. Next Steps Archives ▪ Validate translations/transcriptions Dissemination ▪ Website (perpetuate) ▪ Academic/Practitioner Publications ▪ Cultural reproduction de Langis ©2014

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