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From Rice Fields to Killing Fields
Nature, Life, and Labor Under the Khmer Rouge

James A. Tyner

Hardcover $60.00L    |    978-0-8156-3556-7    |    2017

Paper $29.95s    |    978-0-8156-3541-3    |    2017

ebook 978-0-8156-5422-3

Director’s Choice for Fall 2017

A documentary-based Marxist interpretation of the policies and practices initiated by the Khmer Rouge during the Cambodian genocide.

"In this path-breaking and provocative work, Tyner examines the political economy of the Cambodian genocide through the lens of dialectical materialism. Challenging essentially the entire existing corpus of scholarship on the Khmer Rouge revolution, Tyner fashions not only a novel theory of genocidal processes, but also makes fresh contributions to the analysis of revolution."—Craig Etcheson, author of After the Killing Fields: Lessons from the Cambodian Genocide

"Arguing from a perspective critically informed by Marx’s writings, Tyner shows that while Pol Pot’s regime tried to develop a socialist system, according to its own questionable understanding of what that would entail, it actually produced something better described as a form of state capitalism, based—among other things—on the exploitation of labor. What Pol Pot’s enterprise thus discredits is not Marxism or attempts at socialist construction per se, but rather the kinds of class processes Marx did so much to critique. Tyner’s argument makes for bracing and timely reading in a world where exploitation and class politics seem as salient as ever, and where new generations struggle to develop alternatives."—Jim Glassman, Department of Geography, University of British Columbia

"A must-read for students of Cambodia and of stateled economic development. Tyner argues that Khmer Rouge leaders inductively drew lessons from physical conditions and economic practice to shape the contours of their revolutionary society, culminating in a specialized form of state capitalism. His analysis complicates what we know of the nature of Cambodian communism lurking behind the mass killings in Democratic Kampuchea."—Andrew Mertha, professor of government, Cornell University

  From Rice Fields to Killing Fields

  James A. Tyner is professor of geography at Kent State University. He is the author of more than a dozen books, including Genocide and the Geographical Imagination: Life and Death in Germany, China, and Cambodia.

Book Description »

View other series books in Syracuse Studies in Geography.

6 x 9, 288 pages, 9 black-and-white illustrations, 2 maps, bibliography, index

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