Leaving the House of Ghosts

Leaving the House of Ghosts

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On April 17, 1975, after five years of civil war, the Khmer Rouge guerrillas invaded Cambodia's major cities and forced the residents on a mass exodus to the countryside. Their leader, Pol Pot, established a government based on terror to bring about his dream of an agrarian society where work was done by hand--without what he believed to be corruptive influences. By the time the Vietnamese captured Phnom Penh and ended this brutal experiment in communism in 1979, an estimated two million Cambodians were dead and hundreds of thousands had begun to flee the country for refugee camps in Thailand. Survivors of Pol Pot and his Khmer Rouge now living in the Midwest tell their stories in this work. Many of them were children during that time, unable to comprehend exactly what was happening and why, but now able to reveal the trauma they experienced. Noeun Nor and Sinn Lok recollect being wrenched from their families and put into labor camps around the age of five. Prum Nath talks about her mother encouraging her to eat the last grains of her family's rice. Sokhary You remembers giving birth on a mountain without a doctor or hospital and using rusty scissors to cut the umbilical cord.Sophea taught the new staff everything about the lawnmower repair business: repair, inventory; he had every part number memorized. As graduation day approached, the local paper listed the seniors graduating with honors. Martha saw hisanbsp;...

Title:Leaving the House of Ghosts
Author: Sarah Streed
Publisher:McFarland - 2002-08-26

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