18 December 2007

Khmer Krom

(extract from the Herald Tribune's article Buddhist monks, police clash during protest in Cambodia)

"Dozens of Buddhist monks kicked, punched and hurled bottles at baton-wielding police in Cambodia's capital Monday at a demonstration to demand religious freedom for monks in neighboring Vietnam.
The clashes erupted as about 40 monks approached the Vietnamese Embassy in Phnom Penh to submit a petition against authorities' alleged mistreatment of Buddhist monks in the communist country.

The protesters accused Vietnamese authorities of arresting and defrocking several ethnic Cambodian monks over the past few months.
In the Phnom Penh protest, about 100 riot police used batons to beat back the monks, blocking them from marching near the embassy."

These Buddhist monks are Khmer Krom, that is to say ethnic Khmer who inhabited the Mekong Delta before the arrival of the Vietnamese. Since the incorporation of the Mekong Delta into Vietnam in 1954, the region has cristallized tensions between the Cambodian and the Vietnamese. Indeed, Khmer Krom are forced to assimilation by the Vietnamese governement who impose them Vietnamese names and Vietnamese language. They are also victims of some ostracism which is reinforced by their practicing a different religion than Vietnamese people (Khmer Krom are
Theravada Buddhists, like Cambodian and Thai people, but unlike Vietnamese who are Mahayana Buddhists or Roman Catholics).

Buddhist monks, police clash during protest in Cambodia - Herald Tribune 12/17/2007

An article about Khmer Krom temples and religion
Forgotten Treasures of Khmer Culture in the Mekong Delta by Moeun Nhean

12 December 2007

Migrant workers in China

Their current number is estimated at 150 million, or 11.5 per cent of the population, nearly double that of 10 years ago. Many of them come from ethnic minorities areas.

In October, eRenlai magazine featured a special Focus about the life of Yi migrants in China's big cities: voice records, interviews and photo reportages compose the precious testimonies of this neglected population.

Here is a bouquet of articles, flash animations and voices records to know more and understand better this phenomenon in China:

"The Yi workers range in age from 20 to 40 years old, so they are carrying the twin burdens of supporting their elders and caring for their children, who sometimes number three or four.They still have to send money back home (around 500 Yuan per month) in order to satisfy the demanding expectations and wishes of their families in their hometowns. To save money, several workers rent a single room together so each one only pays 50 to 60 Yuan per month. The living conditions are barely adequate and the hygiene extremely poor..."

"The migration of young people from the Chinese countryside to cities raises a number of questions about the future of rural and mountainous areas. Will this exodus create deserted areas, without working force and creativity, or will these youth come back to transform and energize their place of origins?"

From Liangshan to Shenzhen by Hua Li (voice in Chinese)
"I am just back from Shenzhen where I worked for three months in a plant doing cell phones, assembling parts. My formation lasted for 3 or 4 days, and afterwards I worked. The salary was 1,000 RMB, but once all the fees were deducted we were earning 700 RMB a month. We were 23 to leave together. The others still work in this factory. I came back because I heard about this opportunity in Shanghai.In this factory, after one year you can sign a contract. Before that, you are just a temporary worker.I’d like to study a technique, a trade, whatever which. I’d like to help the poorer people around here. I think we should plant more vegetables. I am interested in the greenhouse project."

Ethnic migrant workers in China today by B. Vermander
"The needs and difficulties faced by ethnic minority migrant workers are multi faceted: they comprise (a) the lack or the very poor quality of the formal education received before they have left; (b) the general problems met by migrant workers all over China (housing, working conditions, lack of work contracts, healthcare…); (c) additional difficulties linked to their cultural and linguistic estrangement; (d) lack of sustainable community projects at home, which also means (e) lack of long-term perspectives and subsequent difficulty in formulating a personal project.. ."
ead more

And plenty other testimonies, studies and articles on eRenlai.com

10 December 2007

les contes du chasseur...

Ou "le chasseur de contes" ou les "historiettes du chasseur"...

Difficile de traduire le nom du blog de Wei Jeune 獵人絮語 qui nous gratifie de petites histoires charmantes cueillies au gré de ses déambulations à Paris...

Pour info, Wei jeune est taiwanais, il fait ses études à Paris et il écrit à la fois en chinois et en français... je salue au passage son poème Ne se passe pas, qui ne se passe pas de commentaire...

Le blog de Wei Jeune : http://archichasse.wordpress.com/

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