Cambodian-American Women and Youth Oral History Projects
The Cambodian-American Women and Youth Oral History Projects were initiated in 1986 by Richard F. Mollica, M.D., in conjunction with the Schlesinger Library. With the support of the Ford Foundation and with the assistance of his Cambodian associate, Svang Tor, who served as interpreter, Mollica interviewed ten Cambodian women. Each interview explores the "trauma" story, beginning in Cambodia and continuing through immigration to the United States; the impact of the interviewee's experiences, both political and personal, on her life; changes in gender-related roles after her arrival in the United States; and the significance of Buddhism in her ability to cope with her trauma and new life. Mollica began a second phase of interviews with groups of Cambodian-American youth in 1991, recording group interviews in English with young people who had lived in the United States for five years or more. These interviews focus on trauma stories and survival experiences of the Pol Pot regime, acculturation experiences in the United States, inter-generational relationships, racism and prejudice, dating behavior, and religious and cultural conflicts.