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Cambodia: Reconstructing the Demographic Stab of the Past and Forecasting the Demographic Scar of the Future

Abstract

Cambodia went through 5 years of violent internal conflicts (1970–1975), including the spread of the American–Vietnamese war into the country, followed by four more years of brutal and chaotic Khmer Rouge government (1975–1979). The result was almost 2 million deaths. This article attempts to contribute to the reconstruction of the demographic history of Cambodia. This is done in three ways. First, by analysing scars in the pyramids corresponding to the recent past, present and future; second, by estimating major demographic events during the 1970s, especially excess deaths; and third, by comparing the size and composition of a simulated normal population with the real population.

Résumé

Le Cambodge a traversé 5 années de violents conflits internes (1970–1975), incluant l’extension de la guerre américano-vietnamienne au pays, suivies de 4 années de chaos et de brutalité sous le gouvernement des Khmers rouges. Il en est résulté près de deux millions de morts. Cet article contribue à la reconstruction de l’histoire démographique du Cambodge, par trois voies différentes : d’abord, en analysant les cicatrices présentes dans la pyramide, ensuite en estimant les principaux événements démographiques des années 1970, et particulièrement le surcroît de décès, enfin, en comparant la taille et la structure de la population effectivement observée à celle d’une population théorique simulée en l’absence de crise.

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Correspondence to Ricardo F. Neupert.

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Neupert, Ricardo. F. and Virak Prum, 2005, Cambodia: Reconstructing the Demographic Stab of the Past and Forecasting the Demographic Scar of the Future, European Journal of Population, 21: 217--246.

Neupert, Ricardo. F. et Virak Prum, 2005, Cambodge: reconstruction des conséquences des conflits passés sur la population et projection des séquelles démographiques à venir, Revue Européenne de Démographie, 21: 217--246.

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Neupert, R.F., Prum, V. Cambodia: Reconstructing the Demographic Stab of the Past and Forecasting the Demographic Scar of the Future. Eur J Population 21, 217–246 (2005). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10680-005-6854-3

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10680-005-6854-3

Key words

  • Cambodia
  • excess deaths
  • internal conflicts
  • population crisis
  • retrospective projections

Mots clés

  • Cambodge
  • conflits internes
  • crise démographique
  • projections rétrospectives
  • surmortalité de crise