KHMER RENAISSANCE

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Our Culture defines us and who we are. Today there is a great energy in reviving Khmer identity, language, art and culture of which the Cambodian people were once so justifiably proud.

The glory of Khmer culture, arts and language under the Khmer empire inspired a rebirth in the so-called Golden Era under King Sihanouk in the 1950s and 1960s which was brutally interrupted and destroyed by the civil war and genocide of 1970s. Today there is a great energy in the country and a culture revival is underway. Montra Nivesha is actively contributing to this Khmer Renaissance through culture, the arts and and our environment.

The Khmer people are enriched by their culture, tradition and their way of life which has evolved over so many generations. They are very proud of their language, their literature and their arts which have carried their influence over most of mainland Southeast Asia. Cambodia experience many centuries of unrivalled power and influence during the time of the Khmer Empire. Much later during the Golden Era of the independence period Cambodia experienced a renaissance and the dynamic capital Phnom Penh was commonly known as “The Pearl of Asia”.

This period of great optimism was interrupted by the very dark cloud of the 1970s civil war and genocide, which claimed the lives of nearly three million Cambodians. The victims included intellectuals, scholars, professors, doctors, lawyers and many more of the intelligensia. So many archives, books and films in the Khmer languages were lost in the chaos.

Yosothor is an independent Cambodian institution working to promote the research and dissemination of Cambodian culture. It was founded by Professor Ang Choulean, a leading Cambodian anthropologist and archaeologist who was a recipient of the Fukoka Grand Prize for Asian Culture in 2011. “The laureate must have made outstanding contributions to the preservation and creation of Asian culture and have exhibited the significance of Asian culture to the world.”

Yosothor produces a trilingual academic journal, Udaya, and the periodical Khmer Renaissance to reach a more popular Khmer-reading audience and are fully online. Hanuman has been a strong supporter of Yosothor since its foundation, funding the publication of its journals in the Khmer language to help the next generation of Khmer scholars and researchers discover more about their culture and history from leading Cambodian experts such as Professor Ang Choulean.