The Rise and Fall of the Khmer Empire during the Angkor period, 9th to 15th century A.D.

Angkor Wat. Photo Credit: Chen Chanratana

Colloquium with Dr. CHEN Chanratana, University of Cambodia

Tuesday, February 16, 2016
12:30 PM - 2:00 PM
10383 Bunche Hall
UCLA Campus
Los Angeles, CA 90095

Archaeological research in Cambodia began in the late 19th century following the rediscovery of the lost jungle capital of the Khmer Empire by French explorers. The artistic and architectural magnificence of the Khmer civilization immediately attracted the greatest scholars of France and Europe. American and Asian scholars later joined the mission to better understand this brilliant culture. People from around the world participated in grand efforts to map, excavate and restore ancient structures and countless studies, articles and books were published about the Khmer.

Tragically, war in Southeast Asia during the 1970s stopped academic progress for nearly 25 years. Cambodia did not begin to recover until the early 1990s when the present government restored order in the nation. In 1994, Angkor Wat was registered as a World Heritage site attracting many international heritage groups to Cambodia and the Angkor region. Working with local experts from Cambodia’s Ministry of Culture and Fine Arts and the APSARA Authority these organizations are once again continuing the mission to restore and preserve the legacy of Khmer temples and heritage.

The presentation will focus on the Rise and the Fall of the Khmer Empire during the Angkor period, from the 9th to 15th centuries A.D., drawing on the most recent research findings from local and international institutions.

Dr. CHEN Chanratana is a Cambodian archaeologist and art historian. He is the founder/president of the Kerdomnel Khmer Foundation (KDNK). He received his doctoral degree in Art, Archaeology, Khmer art history and the history of Southeast Asia from the University of Sorbonne in France. His Ph.D. dissertation was entitled “Koh Ker site and the reign of King Jayavarman IV, history, art, and archaeology.” The French version was published in 2012 by Presses Academiques Francophones (PAF) in Germany. He is currently working as a professor of Khmer Studies, Khmer Culture, Khmer Language, Art History, Anthropology, Social Theory, and Sociology, at Zaman University and the University of Cambodia. He works also as a national expert of Cambodian cultural heritage for the Documentation Center of Cambodia (DC-Cam) and the Sleuk Rith Institute (SRI) as well as serving as a lecturer guide for various historical sites in Cambodia.

Cost : Free and open to the public.


Sponsor(s): Center for Southeast Asian Studies, Art History