Organized Panel Session
Much of the scholarship on the memory and memorialization of the Cambodian genocide thus far has focused on the official state-sponsored narratives and historical memory processes such as the Khmer Rouge Tribunal on the one hand, and to a lesser extent the local accounts and memorial practices of individuals and communities in Cambodia and abroad on the other. However, despite the profound expansion in the role of digital media and technology worldwide and within Cambodia, there is only marginal understanding of how these phenomena may produce and contour present and future knowledge and understandings of the Khmer Rouge past.
This paper provides an overview of some of the digital and online processes and practices in relation to Cambodia’s Khmer Rouge past as well highlighting the possibility for other technologies (such as artificial intelligence ‘AI’) currently employed in other genocide memorial projects. What practical and ethical issues emerge through the expanded use of digital technology and media in understanding and narrating the past? How might the Cambodian state, corporations, or other powerful entities influence the shaping of the past through digital technology and how might official narratives be contested? This paper details a number of specific practices and events both within Cambodia, the Cambodian virtual media-scape, and beyond to illustrate the issues and challenges pertaining to the preservation, transmission, veracity, and accessibility of archives, testimonies, media and other depositories of history and social memory.