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Literature, Politics and Genocide in Cambodia

Asian Studies 2225
Three credit course, June 22 August 5, 2015

Offered in a distance learning format.

Course Description
This course examines various literary, historical and political responses to the Cambodian genocide, particularly literary testimony by survivors and governmental efforts to bring the perpetrators to justice. The course considers the limited effectiveness of these responses for addressing the causes and effects of genocide despite the vow of "Never again".

To pursue these questions, students will read selections from novels and poetry written by Cambodian survivors, along with historical accounts of the genocide and analyses of attempts by the Cambodian government and the international community to bring the perpetrators to justice. The course is taught by Dr. George V. Chigas (M.A. from Cornell University, Ph.D. from the School of Oriental and African Studies at the University of London). Dr. Chigas was previously the Associate Director of the Cambodian Genocide Program at Yale University. For more information, please e-mail him at

Course Structure
Students complete regular assignments using the web and submit homework via e-mail. Students will find additional support materials, and a discussion board at the course web site. A course packet with the required readings for the course (in English) will be available to students that have officially registered with the School of Continuing Education and Summer Sessions.

Course Requirements
The final grade is based on online threaded discussions (40%), a midterm paper (20%), and a final paper (40%). Each week, students are required to read lectures, complete assigned readings and participate in online discussions. Timely completion of assigned lectures and readings are a prerequisite to participation in the online discussions.

Credit Options & Tuition
The course is a three credit course and can be taken for letter grade only. Tuition is $3,780.

Students must register through the Registrar's office at the School of Continuing Education and Summer Sessions
B20 Day Hall
Cornell University
Ithaca, NY 14853-2801
Telephone: (607) 255-4987
Fax: (607) 255-9697

Hardware and Software Requirements

  • Microcomputer (Pentium or equivalent, Power Macintosh or better)
  • High-speed Internet connection (56k modem, Cable or DSL)
  • An Internet Service Provider, such as AOL, MSN, or other national or local ISP
  • A web browser such as Netscape, Microsoft Internet Explorer, or other Java capable browser. Netscape or Internet Explorer must be version 4.0 or greater. Students who need to upgrade their browser will be given instructions to do so either by downloading from the internet or from the course web site.
  • Familiarity with using a personal computer, browsing the web and downloading files.

Additional Course Information
For more information about course content contact:
George Chigas
Telephone: (617) 803-3307