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The Eco-Global Museum

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Item Code: UAS604
Author: Srey Peou Em
Publisher: B.R. Publishing Corporation
Language: English
Edition: 2015
ISBN: 9789350502013
Pages: 88
Other Details 9.50 X 6.50 inch
Weight 340 gm
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Book Description
About the Book

As a world-wide phenomenon, the ecomuseum has radically changed the perception of the growing discipline of museology. The fascinating narrative embedded herein explains lucidly how museums have moved beyond the confines of a building and collections in order to establish partnership with the local communities for the holistic development of a territory, safeguarding its social, economic and cultural milieu The Eco-Global Museum, Preah Vihear has been presented as a definitive contribution to the refinement of the concept of ecomuseum, with a plea to transform this venture as a museum without walls, provided with a number of antenna or outposts to document, preserve and promote the environment, ecology and art related memory. The monograph provides indispensible material for students, researchers and policy planners interested in exploring new trends in the domains of museum and museology.

About the Author

Srey Peou Em graduated from the Royal University of Phnom Penh with a major in French language and literature, and Tourism. Under the Mekong-Ganga Scholarship she studied at the National Museum Institute (Deemed University), New Delhi from where she obtained an M. A. degree in Museology. For writing this thesis, in partial fulfillment of Master's degree, she carried out research at Preah Vihear, the headquarter of Eco- Global Museum and at the World Heritage Temple of Preah Vihear under a UNESCO Internship. Currently she is Deputy Director, The Mekong-Ganga Asian Textile Museum, Siem Reap (Cambodia).


I am delighted to express my thoughts on The Eco- Global Museum, a monograph written by an exceptionally enterprising Cambodian national. The author Ms Srey Peou Em approached my office in 2012 with a request to enroll her as UNESCO Intern to complete a Master's thesis on the Eco Global Museum, Preah Vihear. At that moment UNESCO was working in full swing in close collaboration with the National Task Force and Preah Vihear National Authority to give a final shape to the Eco-Global Museum, Preah Vihear, dedicated to Prime Minister Mohasenabedi Somdech Techo Hun Sen. We welcomed the author of this monograph to participate in our efforts and she worked with us from September 2012 to March 2013. As UNESCO Intern Ms Srey Peou Em worked under my supervision and in close collaboration with my colleagues, especially with Mr. Kilian Blaize and Mr. Mey Kosal, to put in place the infrastructure of the upcoming museum and to settle technical issues with a surprising sense of commitment and a solid background of museology. Only in April 2014, when I personally visited the National Museum in New Delhi, could I understand the source of the author's capabilities and potentials. I realized that at our disposal was a person who had already spent over two years of long working hours in one of the biggest and finest museums of Asian collection in New Delhi. I note with a great sense of satisfaction that the author has been able to explain in a very lucid manner the origin and evolution of Ecomuseum in a global context and highlight the uniqueness of the Eco-Global Museum, Preah Vihear. She offers blue-prints for developing at least three independent antenna of the Eco- Global Museum, one each for the Dangrek Range, Preah Vihear World Heritage Temple and Kuay ethnic minority along with conclusions and recommendations very helpful for future policy planner. I hope everyone concerned with the development of Cambodia will join me in congratulating the author for her contribution.


I express my sincere thanks to Indian Council for Cultural Relation for granting me a Mekong-Ganga Fellowship which has made the writing of this thesis possible. I express my deep sense of gratitude to my teachers at the National Museum Institute (Deemed University), New Delhi for their guidance and support. I am particularly grateful to Professor Manvi Seth, Head, Department of Museology and Professor A.K Das, supervisor of my thesis for their valuable guidance and kind support. I am deeply indebted to H.E. Dr SOK An, Deputy Prime Minister of Cambodia and President APSARA Authority, Siem Reap, Cambodia for allowing me to carry out this study and the research. I am particularly thankful to H.E Bun Narith, Director General, Apsara Authority and Mme Chau Sun Kerya, Advisor, Apsara Authority for their kind support and encouragement. To H.E Hab Touch, Director General, Ministry of Culture and Fine Arts, Royal Government of Cambodia, I owe a deep debt of gratitude for placing at my disposal his vast knowledge of Museology and informing me about future development of Preah Vihear Eco- Global Museum. To H.E Sours Yara, the then Vice President of National Task Force, and now Member Parliament, I express my sincere thanks for providing me all possible facilities to work at Eco- Global Museum. Officials of National Authority for Preah Vihear (ANVP)-H.E. Chuch Phoeun, Mr. Uk Topbotra, Director General, Mr. Long Kosal, Director of Tourism Development Department of National Authority of Preah Vihear offered their kind support to me. I am deeply indebted to Professor Anupa Pande, Dean, National Museum Institute (Deemed University), New Delhi for her constant support and guidance. Her teaching in History of Art has helped me a lot to link the temple of Preah Vihear and other temples in the region with the Eco-Global Museum.


This monograph aims to present the up-coming Eco-Global Museum at Preah Vihear in a critical and constructive perspective so that the museum planners could realize their goal of establishing a world-renowned ecomuseum, in Cambodia. The Beginning of the Eco-Global Museum Project Construction of a museum building on 200 hectares of land began in May 2009. The museum was publicly announced by the Cambodian Deputy Prime Minister Sok An on 5th February 2010. And the news was reported on Saturday, the 6th February 2010 via CAAI News Media, (Auckland, New Zealand). By now the spacious museum building has been completed following a master plan prepared by Cambodian experts in consultation with Cultural experts of the United Nation Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). Location of the Museum Building The museum is located in Sraem village, Kantout commune in Chaom Khsant district of Preah Vihear province, northern Cambodia. It is at the foothills of the Dangrek Range, about 23 kilometers from Preah Vihear World Heritage Temple located on a cliff- top. As announced by the minister the museum will participate in the program of sustainable development of Preah Vihear Region in particular, and Cambodia as a whole. Present Objectives of the Eco-Global Museum Display of the Khmer archeological artifacts, the culture of Khmer ethnic minority Kuay, expert in iron smelting and weapon production since Angkor times, 275 ancient temples in the province of Preah Vihear (according to an estimate published in a provincial government brochure), and plantations to boost the knowledge of traditional medicine these are some of the projects on the agenda of the museum. The concept of Ecomuseum was developed in France by George Henri Rivière and Hugues de Varine who coined the term ecomuseum, eco being the short form of ecology. The ecomuseum emphasizes the idea of holistic interpretation of cultural heritage in opposition to the traditional method of focus on specific items and objects. The definition of an ecomuseum is still a controversial matter. According to one definition the ecomuseums are defined by what they do rather than what they are. There are presently about 300 operating ecomuseums in the world, about 200 are in Europe, mainly in France, Italy, Spain and Poland. There is no one model for ecomuseums. To determine the role and function of a new ecomuseum, founders must take into account the main features of landscape, environment, and heritage of the given area wherein an ecomuseum will be located (Peter, Coveney and Roger Highfield, 1995, 17). The Purpose of the Dissertation The purpose of the present dissertation is to provide a guideline for the development of the Samdech Decho Hun Sen Eco-Global Museum, the first of its kind in my country, Cambodia. Discussions held with experts involved in the establishment of this museum have led me to the conclusion that the proposed ecomuseum is confined to its new building which is already complete. There will be four sections in the museum building (1) History, (2) Archeology, (3) Kuay Minority and (4) Plants and wild life. Need for Establishing Antenna However, only conventional galleries will not help the upcoming museum to qualify itself as an ecomusem. In this dissertation, the need for establishing initially at least one antenna for each of the three major issues (nature, heritage and ethnic community) has been emphasized. Through these proposed antennae the up-coming museum could relate itself to the landscape, architectural heritage, natural features, wildlife and plants of the region in order to interpret these aspects for the national and international visitors and to inspire the local community to accelerate sustainable development of the area. My main concern is to assure how the up-coming ecomuseum could locate a number of sites outside the museum building and carry out activities to promote local participation and awareness about the need of protecting heritage, environment and assuring sustainable growth. Methodology To write this thesis, the secondary sources on the ecomuseum-books, journals, reports etc have been consulted. Field work at the museum site and its territory was carried out from September 2012 to March 2013. Open ended interviews were conducted to gather data from the officials of the organizations which are involved with the plan of the museum. It was possible for me to interview a wide range of persons connected with the establishment of the museum. Through this process I was able to ascertain the intentions, aims and objectives of the museum. Chapterization The thesis is being presented in five chapters. The chapter 1 traces the origin and development of ecomuseum in different parts of the world as a new trend in museology. This section is useful as a guide line for the developers of the up-coming museum. The second chapter presents the buildings recently constructed to house the Preah Vihear Eco-Global Museum and describes various galleries of the museum in which collections are displayed. In this chapter, effort has been made to convince the founders of the museum that the building which they have completed is just the headquarters of the museum. Majority of the activities of the museum should be carried outside the walls of this headquarter museum building in shape of antenna. The Eco-Global Museum is situated at the foot of the Dangrek Mountain Range in the Preah Vihear Province of Cambodia. This mountain range, with its forests and variety of birds and animals is an ecological landscape which comes in the purview of the newly established museum. The third chapter, therefore, examines the potentials of the Dangrek Range as an ecological zone to clearly define the role of the museum in monitoring the development process in this important zone and emphasizes the need for establishing an antenna at Ta Thao Pass in the Dangrek range. Since the Dangrek is 300 kilometers long, it is necessary for the museum to define a precise area of the range to be covered by the activities of antenna. The fourth chapter presents the antenna for the World Heritage Temple of Preah Vihear as an integral part of the ecomuseum, demonstrating that the temple was built on the cliff of the Dangrek range taking into account the ecological setting of the area. The fifth chapter offers the profile of the ethno-linguistic minority of the Kuay people and their participatory role in the Preah Vihear Eco- Global Museum and pleads for establishing an antenna to carry out the activities at the Kuay village of Kalapiya where there is also a beautiful Angkorean temple dedicated to Shiva. The final section (Conclusion and Recommendations) offer my suggestions for improving the museum conceptually and functionally. Lists of photographs, maps and illustrations, and a bibliography have been provided to facilitate further research.

**Contents and Sample Pages**

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