Gender representation in Cambodian television advertisements
This study analyzes 157 unduplicated Cambodian television advertisements for differences in gender representation. The findings indicate gender differences for several variables, including the degree of dress (more men than women were fully dressed and more women than men were suggestively dressed), the setting (more women than men were at home and more men than women were in the workplace), voiceovers (male voiceovers clearly outnumbered female ones), and product categories (women were featured in advertisements for body care/toiletries/cosmetics/beauty products, and men were in advertisements for alcoholic drinks and automotive/vehicles/transportation/accessories products). Most of these gender differences were expected in the patriarchal society of Cambodia, where there are traditionally strict codes of conduct for men and women. However, some results (equal numerical representation, age) ran counter to most previous research. The potential effects of such representations on audiences are discussed based on social cognitive theory and cultivation theory.
Fragments in the Archive: The Khmer Rouge Years
Cambodia’s cinema history is strange and surprising. Popular films from France and the United States circulated through the Kingdom during the French colonial period. The 1950s and 60s saw extensive local production with the enthusiastic support of King Norodom Sihanouk, himself a passionate film-maker, but the Khmer Rouge regime (1975-1979) destroyed most of the existing material, including hundreds of feature films, raw footage and countless other ephemeral documents. In 2006, after representations by film-maker Rithy Panh and others, the Bophana Audio-Visual Research Centre was established in Phnom Penh to comb the world for every fragment of film and audio material relating to Cambodia’s history in order to reproduce it in an accessible digitized form. The archival preservation and duplication has continued apace. However the ethical use of these materials presents challenges. Contemporary documentary makers and digital enthusiasts frequently use fragmentary footage to support their political or historical interpretations without attribution or context. This paper discusses a propaganda film featuring the former King Norodom Sihanouk and his wife Monique shot in 1973 in collaboration with the Communist Chinese, the North Vietnamese and the Khmer Rouge. Short scenes and extracts from this film circulate online and appear in many documentaries. The “archive effect” of this footage raises questions about the source and circulation of archival images with significant historical and political consequences.