柬埔寨通史 | The History of Cambodia | Paperback
by Lisheng Duan
Language : Chinese2018 - 1st - 309 pages - Paperback 上海社会科学院出版社 | Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences Press
Comparing Western and Chinese approaches on the history of Cambodia is important for the clarification of some controversed parts of the Kingdom's evolution. The methodology and perspectives taken by the author obviously emphasizes the influence of China over Southeast Asia, and Cambodia in particular.
On Funan, the importance of Chinese trade is emphasized:
扶南一直跟中国保持着密切的朝贡关系。扶南的兴亡与海上丝路密切相关，海上丝路助力扶南成为东南亚的海上强国，推动了扶南的造船业和海上贸易的发展，促进了扶南的经济繁荣和鼎盛。由此证明，海上丝路自古以来就是一条沿线国家互利共赢、促进经济文化交流、共创辉煌的海上通道。("Funan has always maintained a close tributary relationship with China. The rise and fall of Funan is closely related to the Maritime Silk Road. The Maritime Silk Road has helped Funan become a maritime power in Southeast Asia, promoted the development of Funan's shipbuilding industry and maritime trade, and promoted Funan's economic prosperity. This proves that since ancient times, the Maritime Silk Road has been a sea channel for the countries along the path to mutually benefiting, promoting economic and cultural exchanges, and creating prestige together.")
About the decline and fall of Angkor, the author opts for a definitely political explanation, rather than economical or climatic factors:
放弃吴哥，标志着吴哥王朝的终结，也是晚期真腊衰败的开始。这一阶段的历史特点是，内忧外患接踵而至。内忧主要源于上层统治集团对最高权力的争夺，兄弟阋于墙，各自引入外部势力作为自己的后台，结果暹罗、越南乘机介入，通过培植傀儡，达到肢解真腊的目的。内忧加剧了外患，内忧外患的合力，促成了真腊的衰败. ("The abandonment of Angkor marks the end of the Angkor dynasty, and also of the late Zhenla. The historical feature of this stage is that internal and external troubles followed one after another. The internal worries mainly stem from the struggle for the supreme power by the upper ruling group. Brothers each introduced external forces as their own backup. As a result, Lao and Vietnam took the opportunity to intervene and achieved the goal of dismembering the Empire. Internal troubles caused external troubles, and the combination of both contributed to Zhenla’s decay.")
About the Author
教授 (Jiaoshou, Professor) 段立生 Duan Lisheng (1944, Dali, Yunnan Province 大理市 云南), a descendant of the Duan Royal Family of Dali, is distinguished scholar in history of art, Siamese and Thai cultures, Southeast Asia and world architecture.
Graduated from Beijing University in 1967 after studying history witht the guidance of Prof. Guangxi People's Publishing House; 1st edition (February 1, 2018), Prof. Duan Lisheng joined the Institute of Southeast Asian Studies at Sun Yat-sen University, and was a guest lecturer at Chiang Mai University (Thailand) in 1984-1985, then visiting researcher at the Institute of Asian Studies of Chulalongkorn University. From 1987 to 1992, he was a visiting scholar at Cornell University and Columbia University (USA). After returning to Sun Yat-Sen University in 1992-1994, he taught at Huachiew Chalermprakiet University (Thailand) from 1994 to 2002.
He has authored several books and essays, in particular a History of Thailand, a General History of Cambodia (柬埔寨通史) and, more recently The Realm of Walking (Guangxi People's Publishing House, Feb. 2018, ISBN-13 978-7219104583, in Chinese).